Under California law, an injured patient can pursue a medical malpractice claim in California against doctors, physicians, or other health care providers due to negligence.
Elements of a Medical Malpractice Claim in California
The claimant must be able to establish the following elements to have a successful case:
- There was a patient-doctor relationship
- The doctor owed a standard of care to the patient
- The doctor violated that standard of care
- The doctor’s actions or omissions caused an injury to the patient
- As a result of the medical malpractice the patient suffered
Standard of Care for Medical Malpractice Claims
Standard of care is a term that refers to the accepted practices and procedures that healthcare providers use when treating a patient and it can vary depending on a different number of factors, such as the patient’s overall health or age. A standard of care can be shown through gathering testimony from expert witnesses, such as from another doctor who practices at a similar facility and the same type of medicine.
What Can Qualify as a Medical Malpractice in California?
Some common examples of medical malpractice:
- Failure to diagnose
- Failure to recognize symptoms
- Ignoring or misreading the test results
- Premature discharge
- Providing the wrong medication or wrong dosage
- Unnecessary surgery or surgical errors
- Incorrect medication or dosage
- Poor follow-up care
Who Can Be Liable for Medical Malpractice in California?
In California, an injured person can bring a medical malpractice case against
- Physical therapists
Intent to Sue Notice in Medical Malpractice Lawsuits
A plaintiff must notify a potential medical malpractice defendant, including a doctor or other health care provider, of the plaintiff’s intention to file the lawsuit at least 90 days before the lawsuit is filed. (Cal. Code Civ. Proc. § 364.) The notice must include the legal basis of the claim, the type of loss sustained, and the nature of the injuries suffered. (Id.)
Statute of Limitations for Medical Malpractice Claims in California
In California, a plaintiff has three years after the initial date of the injury to bring a personal injury claim connected to medical malpractice lawsuits. Though in case there is an issue in discovering that something happened such as an injury that shows no signs of damage to the person’s body, there is only 1 year after this plaintiff discovers the harm.
Types of Damages That Can Be Recovered From a Medical Malpractice Claim in California
In California, patients who suffered as a result of medical malpractice can recover the following damages:
- Medical bills
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Home health care
- Lost wages
- Non-economic damages
California medical malpractice laws may change at any time so it would be best to get updated information from a Los Angeles medical malpractice attorney.
Los Angeles Medical Malpractice Attorney
If you were harmed due to a healthcare provider’s negligence, we invite you to get in touch with our Los Angeles medical malpractice attorney at (310) 943-1171 for a free consultation and case review.