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What are some common defenses to medical malpractice?

New York's doctors and nurses are typically well-educated and well-trained. Yet, despite their years of preparation, nothing can fully prepare them for the unique and challenging circumstances that await them. Many medical professionals are able to rise to the occasion, but many others fail to even meet the applicable standard of care. When these doctors and nurses fail, innocent patients are harmed. In an attempt to recover their losses -- which may include lost wages and medical expenses -- these individuals may pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit.

However, many medical malpractice claims are hotly contested. Well-off doctors ,and the hospitals at which they work, have a mountain of resources at their disposal and they will use them to the fullest advantage. Therefore, plaintiffs need to be as fully prepared for battle as they can. One way to do this is to anticipate the potential defenses the injured party may face.

There are many defenses to medical malpractice, but one of the most common is simply challenging the elements of negligence. A doctor may argue that he or she gave medical care that lived up to the standard of care or the doctor may argue that his or her mistake did not cause the injuries in question. Other defenses, exist, though, such as contributory negligence and expiration of the statute of limitations.

The defense strategy chosen will depend heavily on the facts of a case. Successfully anticipating these defenses, though, can give a plaintiff an advantage. The matter can be complicated, and a case may hinge on case law or evidentiary issues. For this reason, many New Yorkers find the assistance of a skilled attorney beneficial.

Source: FindLaw, "Defenses to Medical Malpractice," accessed on Nov. 14, 2016

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