Many people in Maryland realize they have the right to sue their doctor if they were the victim of medical malpractice. A common question that does come is, “do I have the right to file a lawsuit against a hospital or another medical facility?” While these types of cases can be complex, a hospital could be held liable if its practices, procedures, or management resulted in your injury.
Hospitals have an obligation to provide a specific standard of care. If the facility is not maintained or if the administration does not enforce its safety protocols, a patient who suffers harm has the right to sue to recover their damages. Our Baltimore medical malpractice attorneys have the resources and experiences to handle complex litigation against your physician, medical technician, or hospital.
Rice, Murtha & Psoras has been negotiating and litigating complex medical malpractice claims for decades. To discuss your case, call (410) 694-7291.
Medical Malpractice and Maryland Hospitals
Medical malpractice claims are complicated, requiring an understanding of actions hospitals and doctors take to avoid preventable mistakes. This information is necessary if you wish to establish an accepted standard of medical care. When bringing a lawsuit against a Maryland hospital, the plaintiff must prove the following elements:
- The accepted standard of medical care at the time the services or care was provided
- A deviation or breach of the accepted standard of medical care
- The breach resulted in your injury or injuries
Our Maryland medical malpractice attorneys will guide you through this process, explaining how the legal standard applies to your unique circumstances. In some malpractice cases, there will be multiple courses of action that could be considered “standard.” In these situations, the court will review your case based on the most common standard of practice.
Suing a hospital requires testimony from a qualified medical expert. Our office relies on expert testimony to establish the legal standard of care that should have been applied by presenting hypothetical examples of actions or decisions that should have been made to prevent the injury. When focusing on a hospital, we utilize experts in the hospital management field, often focusing on the implementation of protocols and systems to prevent errors and injuries. To prevail in a medical malpractice case, an injured plaintiff must demonstrate that the hospital failed to exercise appropriate care.
Maryland Hospitals and Liability
One tactic Maryland hospitals employ to avoid liability is hiring independent contractors. However, even when this occurs, our Maryland medical malpractice lawyers could pursue an injury claim based on the hospital’s omissions or acts that contributed to the cause of your injuries.
To ascertain if an employee is an independent contractor for liability purposes, our office will examine whether the hospital had control over the individual’s activities, conduct, and decisions.
While Maryland hospitals will try to avoid liability, there are circumstances where denying responsibility is more difficult. Hospitals have non-delegable duties. If a Maryland hospital is accredited, certain duties cannot be transferred to other entities or independent contractors. For example, a hospital is not permitted to delegate the custody, care, and supervision of its patients. Furthermore, the hospital is responsible for maintaining the equipment and facility itself.
Additionally, if proper background checks are not conducted on the physicians and surgeons who use the facility, the hospital could be held liable. This requires the administration or management to conduct reasonable investigations to vet all individuals who practice medicine or provide patient care.
Maryland hospitals also must formulate and adopt protocols, rules, and regulations to ensure their patients receive quality medical care. These rules and regulations must be enforced. When investigating a medical malpractice claim, our Maryland personal injury lawyers will examine these protocols and any employee handbooks or training.
Certificate of Qualified Expert Required to Sue a Maryland Hospital
Maryland malpractice claims differ from other types of personal injury lawsuits. Within 90 days of filing a malpractice claim, our office will have to file a certificate from a qualified medical expert. the medical expert will swear under oath that they examined the claim and attest that the defendant failed to meet the current accepted medical standard of care and this failure was the primary cause of your injuries
Maryland Cap On Medical Malpractice Damages
Another difference between medical malpractice claims and other types of personal injury claims is that, under Maryland law, there is a cap on the compensation a victim of malpractice is permitted to receive. More specifically, Maryland’s law targets the non-economic damages you would be entitled to if you prevailed in your case. This cap impacts your damages no matter who the defendant was, your treating physician, a medical technician, or the hospital itself.
As of 2021, the cap is $845,000. This limit is set to increase by $15,000 each year. If your injury was from a date earlier than 2021, you should subtract $15,000 for every year. This cap does not impact your economic damages. Economic losses are your actual financial expenses, including medical bills, lost income, and other out-of-pocket expenses related to your injury and recovery.
Our Maryland Medical Malpractice Attorneys Have the Experience to Handle Challenging Cases
You do not want to worry about the level of medical care you receive when you undergo a medical procedure. You expect your physician, surgeon, and the hospital to provide professional care. When the standard of medical care is not met or a critical error is made, you could experience devastating medical complications or injuries. If that occurs to you or a loved one, our Harford County medical malpractice lawyers are here to help you fight for your just compensation. To see if you have the grounds to hold a hospital or physician liable for their negligence, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (410) 694-7291.