Medical malpractice takes many different forms. If you have been the victim of malpractice, you may not even know it. Many people first realize that something has gone wrong when a bad result happens; doctors stop talking with them and staff treat them differently.
If this has happened to you, it's important to talk with an experienced Waterloo Medical Malpractice Lawyer about your options. It is important to note that a poor outcome is not necessarily evidence that you are the victim of medical malpractice, though it could be a sign of negligence.
At Ball, Kirk & Holm, P.C., we have been representing victims of medical malpractice and negligence throughout Iowa since 1958. Throughout our decades in practice, we have earned a reputation for effective and aggressive advocacy and a legacy of results.
Our Waterloo medical malpractice attorneys understand the many complexities involved in these types of cases, and we are prepared to help you fight for the justice and compensation you deserve.
Call our experienced medical malpractice attorney at (319) 220-0416 or submit an online contact form to request a free, confidential consultation today. Available 24/7! Proudly serving Iowa City, Waterloo and the rest of the state!
What Is Medical Malpractice?
As previously mentioned, a poor outcome is not medical malpractice. Rather, medical malpractice occurs when a doctor, nurse, or another medical provider fails to provide an acceptable standard of care to a patient.
In other words, if a medical provider fails to provide a level of care that the patient could have reasonably expected to receive from another competent medical professional, this constitutes medical malpractice/negligence.
In order to bring a medical malpractice claim, you will need to prove all of the following elements:
- The Medical Provider Owed You a Duty of Care: In nearly all cases, the existence of a doctor-patient relationship is sufficient evidence to show that the medical provider owed you a duty of care.
- The Medical Provider Breached the Standard Duty of Care: This can be shown by proving that the medical provider failed to provide a level of care that another qualified medical provider would have offered.
- As a Result, You Were Injured and Suffered Measurable Damages: You must show that you were injured or suffered harm and that the breach of the standard duty of care was the cause. You must also show that you sustained damages.
A qualified medical malpractice attorney can thoroughly examine your case, assess the evidence, determine all your legal options, and maximize your entitled compensation.
Types of Medical Malpractice
There are many different types of medical malpractice and negligence, all of which can have extremely devastating consequences for victims and their families. Our Waterloo medical malpractice lawyers handle a wide range of medical malpractice claims for clients throughout Iowa.
We are well prepared to handle even the most difficult cases, including those involving:
- Birth Injuries: Birth injuries can occur during pregnancy, labor, or delivery. Often, these injuries are the result of a doctor or nurse’s negligent or wrongful conduct. When this is the case, our firm can help you seek justice on behalf of your child, as well as the compensation you need to ensure he or she receives proper medical treatment and, in some cases, long-term care.
- Hospital Malpractice: Hospitals that fail to provide patients with a level of care that meets accepted standards can be held liable. Cases involving hospital malpractice might include emergency room errors, negligent hiring of doctors and nurses, poorly trained or untrained staff, medication mistakes, anesthesia errors, surgery errors, and more.
- Misdiagnosis: Diagnosis errors, including misdiagnosis and delayed diagnosis, are some of the most common yet most difficult to prove examples of medical malpractice. When doctors fail to run necessary tests, correctly analyze lab results, or handle other aspects of diagnostics, it can lead to patients receiving improper treatment or failing to receive treatment whatsoever.
- Failure to Diagnose Cancer: Sometimes doctors fail to see signs of cancer that other doctors would catch. They don't run commonly accepted tests and they dismiss patients’ complaints without conducting proper examinations. Delayed diagnosis or misdiagnosis of cancer can be considered medical malpractice when doctors and oncology teams fail to provide patients with an acceptable standard of care.
- Surgical Errors: In the operating room, many different mistakes can be made. Doctors can operate on the wrong body part, they can leave surgical tools inside the body, or they can administer the wrong amount of medication, which may even cause wrongful death. All of these things and other surgical errors may be considered medical malpractice.
- Medication Errors: In hospitals, pharmacies, and other care facilities, medication errors cause many serious injuries and deaths each year. Medication mistakes can include improper dosage, wrong medication, failure to warn of side effects, failure to take patients’ allergies into account, or misfiling prescriptions.
Please note that this is not a comprehensive list. Our skilled medical malpractice attorney can assist you if you believe you are the victim of any of these or other types of medical malpractice.
Compensation for Medical Malpractice Cases
Medical malpractice and negligence often leads to additional injuries, complications, and illnesses. In some cases, it even leads to the untimely and wrongful death of a patient. Victims are entitled to seek compensation for their damages, or the losses they have sustained as a result of the malpractice.
While every case is different, many victims of medical malpractice are able to recover compensation for the following damages:
- Medical expenses associated with additional treatment
- Ongoing and long-term care costs
- Physical and/or cognitive rehabilitation therapy
- Future medical expenses
- Medications, pain management programs, and medical devices/equipment
- Costs associated with making necessary modifications to a home
- Lost income/wages, including future earnings
- Lost/reduced earning potential (disability)
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress and disfigurement
- Costs associated with counseling services
Our Waterloo medical malpractice attorney can sit down with you and listen to your story. We work to understand all of the ways in which you have been affected by a medical professional’s negligence and, from there, create tailored legal strategies aimed at securing all of the compensation you are owed.
Contact Our Waterloo Medical Malpractice Lawyers Today
Do you have reason to believe that you might have been the victim of medical malpractice? Our Waterloo medical malpractice lawyers are ready to help. At Ball, Kirk & Holm, P.C., we have been serving people throughout Iowa for over 60 years. We can help you understand your options and fight for the justice you and your family deserve.
It is important that you act quickly, as you only have two years to bring your medical malpractice claim in the state of Iowa. Once the two-year statute of limitations has expired, you will almost certainly be unable to file a claim and seek damages.