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Although Everyone Makes Mistakes, Physicians’ Mistakes Can Have Uniquely Severe Consequences
No matter how hard we all try, every one of us will make a mistake sooner or later. In nearly all personal and professional situations, the stakes are low enough that making a mistake has little to no impact on your life or on anyone else’s life. But most people are not physicians. In medicine, the stakes tend to be much higher–often a matter of life or death–and even tiny mistakes can have devastating consequences. Physicians and their work are so heavily scrutinized that even the mere allegation of a mistake can lead to internal privilege review, dramatically increased malpractice insurance premiums, malpractice insurance claims, lawsuits and reputational harm that can follow the accused around for the rest of their career. To put it as succinctly as possible, the average physician’s professional error or miscue is far costlier than the average non-physician’s professional error.
Because of the Possible Ramifications, Physicians Cannot Be Too Careful If They Are Accused of Making a Professional Error
When they get accused of making a professional error, physicians must be extremely careful. Allowing any such claim to go too far without mounting a defense could be professional suicide. Deciding not to take the claim seriously enough right away could also be financially ruinous, as the person making the claim could get a default judgment entered against the physician for virtually whatever amount of damages they want if the physician does not respond to the claim quickly enough. When a physician finds out a claim has been filed against them, they should immediately notify their malpractice insurer. As part of their malpractice insurance policy, the physician is likely entitled to a defense and to be indemnified for any costs incurred defending the claim. Most importantly, the insurance carrier will pay any covered judgment or settlement that needs to be paid out to the claimant.
If a Physician Is Named As the Defendant in a Medical Malpractice or Professional Liability Lawsuit, Bringing the Case to a Final Resolution Could Take Quite a While
Unfortunately for physicians who have lawsuits filed against them for mistakes they made–and even for those the claimant only alleges but cannot prove–the wheels of the civil justice system do not spin quickly. In fact, they spin quite slowly. Like most other types of civil lawsuits, medical malpractice cases can go on for years before they are resolved through a settlement, an arbitration hearing or a jury trial. The average physician is busy enough already. The last thing they need is to add the stress of managing their own defense in a lawsuit where their license to practice medicine in their state of choice could be on the line. When someone’s livelihood hangs in the balance, having an experienced advocate to shepherd them through the process is an absolute must.
If You Are a Physician Who Is Being Sued for Malpractice or Professional Liability, You Need a Defense Attorney Who Specializes in Defending Medical Malpractice Cases
When your license is on the line, not just any attorney will do. You need an experienced medical malpractice attorney who understands the procedural and substantive wrinkles that could come up in your case and can handle them without difficulty. An attorney who has successfully defended physicians against malpractice allegations before and knows what it takes to resolve a professional liability case in the manner most favorable to the physician will be able to handle all of the challenges you will inevitably face while your case is pending. When you are choosing a medical malpractice attorney, do your due diligence on each potential candidate for the job to make sure you hire someone who is up to the task that lies ahead.
A Long Island Physician License Defense Attorney Can Help a Physician Bring Their Case to a Favorable Resolution and Move on Both Professionally and Personally from the Lawsuit
Ultimately, what any physician wants from a medical malpractice lawsuit is to bring it to a favorable resolution, leave it in the rearview mirror and move on from it. Hiring a Long Island physician license defense attorney to represent you in your case gives you the best chance of achieving this outcome. Do not settle for less.