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New study: Medical malpractice cases often favor doctors

Victims of medical malpractice in Maryland who seek compensation for medical bills need to be aware of the results of a new study reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine. According to the study, a majority of medical malpractice cases brought against clinicians are either rejected or result in a decision favorable to the health-care provider. Only 55 percent of claims brought even resulted in lawsuits, and of those that went to court, 80 percent were in favor of the clinician.

Another aspect of the report to consider is the timeliness of most medical malpractice cases. According to the report, it takes nearly 20 months, on average, for a court to dismiss medical malpractice cases. And it does not bode much better for those who manage to go to trial. According to the study, the results of a trial may not come for more than three years.

The study also differentiated between different types of doctors, concluding that pathology was the most likely field for cases not to be dismissed. This, the study's authors concluded, was not a surprise since pathology medical malpractice suits generally result from doctors failing to make a diagnosis.

Considering this information as a whole, it is apparent that medical malpractice lawsuits are not matters to be taken lightly. Victims of medical malpractice need to diligently approach the situation and do their best to gather as much pertinent information as they can to prove their cases. The results of this study indicate what most people may have already assumed: Participating in a legal battle with a medical institution is a difficult process that requires significant preparation in order to have a chance of success.

Victims need to consider these facts before involving themselves legally. While the news may be bleak, any person who suffered from medical malpractice deserves the right to bring their case before those responsible and receive compensation for any wrongs done to them.

Source: The Clinical Advisor, "Clinicians win most malpractice suits, but battles are lengthy," Ann W. Latner, June 18, 2012

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