Medical malpractice claims are based on common law negligence. General negligence means an at-fault party had a duty, breached that duty, and caused damages to another. Medical malpractice cases differ from normal personal injury cases involving an average person because healthcare providers must exercise the degree of care, skill, and learning expected of a reasonable, prudent healthcare provider in the profession or class to which he belongs within the state acting in the same or similar circumstances. To make this more complicated, the mere presence of a bad outcome does not necessarily mean the healthcare provider is liable for any damages. Instead, the damage or harm must have been caused by the health care provider's act or omission in violation of their duty. Medical malpractice claims are difficult, as the attorney must be familiar with the medical standards, healthcare standards, and legal standards in the field. It is important you find a qualified and competent attorney who is familiar with the medical malpractice area to ensure the case is handled properly and options for monetary recovery are maximized. Members of Goodnow|McKay are experienced with these claims and are here to help. We are committed to helping our clients recover fair compensation. We are often able to negotiate reasonable settlements with the responsible insurance companies, but we are willing to fight for our clients through trial if necessary.
For any medical malpractice action there must be a relationship between the healthcare provider and the patient such that there is a duty to act for the patient's benefit. In this instance, duty is a relationship between individuals imposing a legal obligation for a healthcare provider to benefit the patient. If these benefits are not provided according to the standard of care (meaning the services and treatment were inappropriate), and this breach causes harm to the patient, then the physician may be liable.
Hospitals serve as places providing buildings and physical needs necessary for physicians to practice medicine. However, hospitals owe a duty to exercise reasonable care and attention to their patient's mental and physical condition. Additionally, Arizona's statutes and regulations dictate a hospital must maintain facilities to provide emergency care and may not deny emergency medical care without cause. As with doctors, healthcare providers must exercise a heightened standard of care. Part of meeting this standard is that the facility must supervise the competence of doctors on staff. Failing to meet this standard can result in liability for negligent hiring, retention, supervision, or credentialing of physicians.
Negligent Credentialing, Retention, and Supervision:
A hospital may be liable for harm or injury committed by its employees under a theory of negligent credentialing, retention, and supervision. A hospital may be liable for injuries caused by its employees if the hospital knew or should have known that the employee was not competent to provide care or that the hospital's failure to supervise the employee was the cause of the injury. Negligent credentialing claims may result when a hospital fails to properly investigate a physician's credentials prior to the physician administering care at the hospital.
Members of Goodnow|McKay are vigilant in research and advocacy on behalf of injury victims. Please see the linked articles below related to medical malpractice and tort reform:
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Chris Goodnow is licensed in Arizona. Justin McKay is licensed in Arizona. Matters in other areas are handled by licensed attorneys employed, associated, or co-counseled with Goodnow|McKay.