Texas politicians have left horribly injured patients out in the cold by capping the financial awards in medical malpractice lawsuits. Who needs the money more, insurance companies or injured victims?
There is no shortage of careless treatment, negligence, and medical malpractice in the state of Texas, according to Houston’s leading medical malpractice attorney Tim Riley. Well-funded insurance companies and medical organizations have successfully lobbied for and received legislative protection in many states including Texas. It is a myth that the health care system in the United States is at great risk of financial disaster because of medical malpractice claims. Medical malpractice costs have been declining as a percentage of total health care spending for years and their total costs are less than 3% of overall health care costs in the United States.
Examples Of Medical Malpractice
- Surgical errors
- Wrong site surgery
- Unnecessary surgery
- Leaving a medical item inside a patient
- Causing avoidable scarring or disfigurement
- Childbirth injuries
- Incorrect or delayed diagnosis
- Failure to treat or incorrect medical treatment
- Ignoring laboratory results
- Misreading laboratory results
- Improper medication or dosage
- Failing to account for a patient’s medical history
Medical Negligence vs. Medical Malpractice
Medical negligence is loosely defined as an action or inaction that fails to meet a standard of medical care. One of the most common areas of medical negligence is a misdiagnosis or an unacceptable delay in diagnosis. If a misdiagnosis causes the patient to suffer an injury, or to experience pain and suffering, then it becomes a medical malpractice case.
What Are The 4 Elements Needed To Prove Medical Negligence?
Since medical malpractice lawsuits must be based on medical negligence, the best medical malpractice lawyers in Texas will focus on four elements in court. These four elements are as follows.
A health care provider has a DUTY to provide a standard level of care to a patient.
If the healthcare provider’s level of medical care was below what was expected or required as the legal duty of care then there was a breach of the legal duty of care.
The healthcare provider’s breach of the legal duty of care caused or contributed to a patient’s injury.
Damage / Harm
The patient suffered injuries as a result of the actions or inactions of the health care provider.
What Is The Cap On Medical Malpractice In Texas?
Non-economic damages are capped at $250,000 in medical malpractice cases in Texas. This cap is per claimant against a physician, health care provider, or health care institution.
It is a moral and ethical crime to deny fair and lifetime compensation to victims of tragic medical malpractice. Many medical malpractice lawsuits in Texas clearly demonstrate the victims will live with the adverse effects for the remainder of their lives. $250,000 is not fair compensation for living 30 or 40 or 50 years with a life-changing medical error. Yet the politicians in Texas have seen fit to limit victims’ medical malpractice awards and protect the profits of insurance companies and doctors. However, little by little the tide is starting to change. California’s politicians have realized how unfair their caps have been for victims and they are making changes. Perhaps one day Texas politicians will realize the harm these financial caps do to victims.
How Long Do You Have To Sue For Medical Malpractice In Texas?
There are exceptions, but as a general rule a medical malpractice victim must file a lawsuit within two years from the date of the negligent act. If the victim files a lawsuit after the two year limitation their medical malpractice attorney will have to be confident that one of the exceptions applies to the case.
Tim Riley – Medical Malpractice Attorney
Tim Riley has 30+ years as a medical malpractice attorney in Houston and Texas and has represented numerous victims in medical malpractice lawsuits. “There will always be reckless, negligent, and apathetic people in the medical community. They should be forced to compensate those who have been injured or killed due to their irresponsible behavior. Sometimes they are sent to prison. But a medical malpractice lawsuit will force the responsible parties to face a jury and pay for the medical costs, lost income, and pain and suffering of the victims. That is my job, to help the victims and families repair their lives and move forward,” commented Mr. Riley, owner of the Riley Law Firm.