Understanding the Fine Line Between Mistakes and Malpractice
In the realm of healthcare, the failure of doctors to treat symptoms appropriately can have serious repercussions. In Tennessee, as in other states, distinguishing between a genuine mistake and actual malpractice is crucial for patients considering a medical lawsuit. This differentiation is not just about legal technicalities; it’s about understanding when a lapse in medical care crosses the threshold into negligence.
The Difference Between Mistakes and Malpractice
In Tennessee, as previously discussed in our conversation with Marc Walwyn, medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare professional deviates from the standard of care, causing harm to a patient. A mistake, on the other hand, might not meet this criterion. Key factors include:
- Standard of Care: This refers to what a reasonably skilled medical professional would or would not have done under similar circumstances.
- Breach of Duty: Malpractice happens when there’s a breach of this standard, directly leading to patient harm.
- Causation and Damage: The patient must prove that the breach caused significant harm or injury.