Kentucky Medical Malpractice Lawyer
If you receive medical treatment that results in further illness or injury, you may be able to sue. Protect your rights and get the best chance of getting the compensation you deserve. Reach out to an experienced medical negligence lawyer in Kentucky.
Mistakes happen. Usually, there is no bad intent when someone makes a mistake that harms another person. Often, mistakes can be fixed. Sadly, this is rarely true when it comes to medical malpractice. Even a minor error in medical treatment can cause death or injury. It can change the course of a person’s life.
Injuries caused by medical malpractice are often devastating, sudden, and costly. On top of that, medical malpractice cases are complex. To address them well, you must understand the science of the medical care at hand. You must also know complex legal strategies.
You and your loved ones are already struggling to heal and cope with unexpected injury. That’s why you may need an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to represent you.
It’s a tragedy when a medical professional of any kind—whether a surgeon, physician, nurse, midwife, or other technician or specialist—makes a mistake and harms someone because of negligence. When it happens, we at Wilt & Thompson, PLLC, seek to hold these individuals accountable in Kentucky’s civil courts.
Our law firm takes this responsibility very seriously. We speak loudly for those who have been wronged by irresponsible medical caregivers. This work is important and has a broad impact. Accountability leads to fewer mistakes and better patient care for everyone in our state.
Our goal is to arm our clients and their families with the tools they need to get back to living. We want our clients to realize the best version of their new normal. To do so, we doggedly pursue full and fair compensation.
We limit how many cases we take on so we can give them each personal time and attention. If we take on your medical malpractice claim, your best interests are our top priority. Our skills can maximize your potential award.
Read on to learn more about medical malpractice claims in Kentucky. If you think you or a loved one are a victim of a medical mistake, a Kentucky medical malpractice lawyer at Wilt & Thompson, PLLC, wants to help.
Understanding Medical Negligence
There are four elements in every medical negligence claim:
- standard of care
- injury (also called damages)
Put simply, in order to have grounds for a claim of medical negligence, you must prove that your injury was caused by the medical treatment at hand and that that medical treatment fell below the standard of care. (Lawyers also refer to this as “breaching” the standard of care.)
The “standard of care” is a legal term that refers to the level of care and judgment that a medical professional with similar training, education, experience, and skill level would provide under similar circumstances.
Put another way, the standard of care applies to every medical professional in the healthcare industry. It measures the level of competency and care a skilled healthcare provider would and should provide to a patient.
In practice, this means you must establish how the average, reasonable healthcare provider, with similar training and under similar circumstances, would have and should have managed your medical treatment. State law requires expert testimony to establish the standard of care in each malpractice case.
“Breach” is a legal term that identifies whether the medical care being discussed—the care that caused the injury—fell below the standard of care. You must prove that your healthcare provider’s medical treatment did not meet the standard that a reasonably experienced professional would have provided in the same situation.
The failure to provide treatment that meets the standard of care is a breach of the healthcare provider’s duty to their patient. Expert witnesses are also required to testify that a medical provider breached the standard of care in order for a medical negligence claim to be successful.
“Causation” is a legal concept that requires proof that the breach of the applicable standard of care caused your injuries. Kentucky applies the substantial factor test. This means you must prove your provider’s breach of the standard of care was a significant factor in the injuries you claim resulted from the breach.
Again, expert testimony is also required to establish causation in a case. Experts must testify they believe the subject breach caused your injuries. Anything less won’t establish a claim of medical malpractice.
“Injury” is a common-sense concept that requires proof of actual harm resulting from a breach of the standard of care. “Damages” is a legal term that identifies the types of injuries recoverable in a lawsuit.
You and your malpractice lawyer must present evidence of every type of injury you believe you suffered as a result of a provider’s breach of the standard of care. You must also name an amount that will compensate you for those injuries. Some damages available in a medical malpractice claim in Kentucky include the following:
- medical expenses
- pain and suffering
- lost wages
- the loss of the power to earn income
A spouse and minor children may also recover damages for the loss of their relationship with the injured party when the loss occurred as a direct result of the injury.
Common Medical Errors in Malpractice Claims
Some common errors that result in medical malpractice claims include:
- Leaving surgical instruments in a body cavity
- Giving the wrong medication
- Giving the wrong dose of medication
- Not ordering appropriate tests
- Not taking a patient’s medical history
- Not providing follow-up care
- Failing to treat a patient
- Misdiagnosing a patient
- Making a mistake during surgery
- Discharging a patient prematurely
- Misinterpreting medical test results
- Operating on the wrong part of the body
- Providing unnecessary surgery
- Birth injuries, such as placental abruption, shoulder dystocia, and cerebral palsy
Have you been injured by any of these common mistakes or one like it? Reach out to our office to discuss the details of your potential malpractice claim.
Certificates of Merit and Kentucky Malpractice Claims
As of June 28, 2019, a Kentucky plaintiff filing a medical malpractice action against a healthcare provider must submit a certificate of merit that affirms that an expert has reviewed the relevant issues and has concluded the medical malpractice lawsuit has reasonable cause. Only one certificate of merit is required, even if there are multiple defendants.
Kentucky Medical Malpractice FAQ
You are considering a medical malpractice claim. So you likely have many unanswered questions. We answer some of the most frequently asked questions below so you can better prepare for a medical malpractice lawsuit. If you have additional questions, please reach out to our office directly to set up a free consultation. This will let us discuss the individual details of your case.
How long do I have to file a medical malpractice claim in Kentucky?
If a claim is not filed before a certain deadline (called the statute of limitations), the claim expires. The court must then dismiss it. In Kentucky, a medical malpractice lawsuit has to be filed within one year from the date a medical error occurred or one year from the date a person should have reasonably expected their injury was caused by negligent care.
Suspect medical malpractice has occurred? The quicker you contact a skilled medical malpractice attorney, the better.
What damages can an attorney help me recover in my malpractice claim?
The damages you may seek in a medical malpractice lawsuit—whether in a doctor, nurse, pharmacy, or hospital claim—are quite similar to those of any other type of personal injury claim. They include things like:
- your medical expenses
- pain and suffering
- emotional distress
- loss of income
- damage to your earning potential
- diminished quality of life
- loss of companionship and love
What is informed consent in medical malpractice?
“Informed consent” refers to the discussion you and your treating medical professional should have prior to your going through medical treatment like surgery, taking new medication, or other procedures.
By law, your doctor is required to describe the risks of the treatment, any possible adverse reactions or side effects you might experience, and the benefits of moving forward with the suggested treatment. After discussing these details, they will ask you to sign a form indicating your informed consent to move forward with the treatment.
By signing, you indicate that the caregiver has provided you with all relevant information involving your treatment. That includes risks, benefits, and side effects. You’re also indicating you have consented to the treatment with this knowledge. If this didn’t happen, that’s a problem.
Meet with a Medical Malpractice Attorney in KY
Do you have reason to believe you or a loved one are a victim of medical malpractice? Learn more about how a qualified Kentucky medical malpractice lawyer at Wilt & Thompson, PLLC, could help you. Schedule a free consultation with our firm as soon as possible.
We review all types of medical malpractice claims for free. Take advantage of this opportunity by filling out our quick contact form, by using our live chat feature, or by calling our office at 502-253-9110.