Medical negligence claims in South Australia can be complex. To understand just what to seek, when to pursue and how to seek, your legal representative requires a good understanding of medical malpractice law in South Australia. They also need a thorough knowledge of the medical community in Adelaide. This includes knowing what doctors know, as well as what lawyers know.
There are many potential sources of financial compensation for medical negligence claims. If you have suffered an attack of some sort at the hands of your doctor, then you may qualify to seek compensation from your medical provider or the doctor’s clinic. You may also be eligible to seek compensation if your general practitioner made a mistake which resulted in you receiving a less than adequate level of care. If you have been the victim of an unsuccessful surgical procedure, then you may be eligible to claim loss of income and/or pain and suffering.
Medical negligence claims can also be made against a hospital or medical provider. For these claims, there are specific time limits. If a claim is brought within a particular period of time, that time period is considered the statute of limitations. Statute of limitations laws vary significantly by state. It is essential to check with your local attorney or state medical board to ensure you are within your state’s statute of limitations.
Many people are surprised to learn that in South Australia, not only doctors but also hospitals and surgeons are covered by various medical negligence claims protection legislation. As set out by the Health and Safety Authority (HSA), medical practitioners who allow the use of dangerous practices in their professional capacity are liable for monetary damages and medical costs, in the event of a claim. These professionals include surgeons, medical staff and nurses. However, it should be noted that these damages and costs do not have to be paid out from the hospital’s funds. These expenses and damages are to be paid from the ‘overall value’ of the patients’ injury and suffering.
Some medical negligence claims also cover a range of issues, including professional errors and omissions, inadequate therapeutic care, and negligence that causes death or substantial pain and suffering. For example, if a surgeon fails to examine a patient properly because he believes it is a minor operation, he or she may be held liable for the patient’s death. Similarly, suppose a general practitioner prescribes a wrong drug for a patient, or fails to diagnose a condition for which he should have interpreted it. In that case, he or she may also be held liable. Other common areas where medical negligence claims may be entertained include faulty surgeries and unnecessary procedures, unnecessary treatments and chemical damage to patients’ private organs.
If you are the victim in any of these situations, it would be wise to consult a solicitor who specializes in medical negligence claims. These solicitors will assist you through the time limits in court and advise you on how best to proceed with your case. This usually involves evidence, medical reports and witnesses who can corroborate your claims. After a reasonable settlement, you may need to take time out of work as the courts take into account any pensions and benefits you have accrued during your working life. Your lawyer will help to make these arrangements as well as ensure that the settlements match your needs and circumstances.