Negligence Post Operative Care
It is essential to recognize that the standard of care required by law is that of a reasonably prudent health care professional (given similar training) in similar circumstances. It is not appropriate to look back from the end result (perhaps the loss of a limb due to infection) and assume that could have been avoided. In a case involving poor care over a period of time (days to years) it is necessary to review what was known to the doctor or other professional, or ought to have been known to that person, at each relevant point in time. It is then necessary to prove that with proper care this worse outcome likely would not have occurred. This may be particularly challenging with respect to cases involving infections. Some infections are so aggressive that even if it had been diagnosed and treated as soon as the first signs and symptoms were noted serious damage would likely have been sustained by the patient in any event.
Hospital Acquired Infections
The injured patient (the plaintiff) has the responsibility to prove that in all likelihood the infection was acquired as a result of the negligence of the hospital, or its staff or other medical professional ie while at the hospital and not in the wider community. This is not always as straight forward as one would like to believe. Claims for infections require very careful consideration and preparation. Angela Price-Stephens has both prosecuted and defended such claims and is experienced in the intricacies of a successful claim. It is too easy for an inexperienced lawyer to assume the fact the patient became infected is sufficient to bring a successful claim. This is far from the reality of pursing a claim to a successful resolution.
Litigation Last Resort
Litigation is always the course of last resort. No one wishes to engage in ligation unless they are confident of a successful outcome. In claims of medical malpractice is it essential that you consult a lawyer who has experience in identifying and evaluating the merits of the case at an early stage – before a good deal of money, time and emotional energy has been invested in the potential claim.
Pursuing claims against the Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) and hospital authorities in general is fundamentally different from pursuing claims against an insurer such as ICBC. It you instruct a lawyer who does not have years of specialist experience dealing with the CMPA and other professional bodies such as the Canadian Nurses Protective Association you are at risk of being left with a claim that should never have been started in the first place (and owing your lawyer money for the disbursements) or with a much lower level of compensation.
Angela Price-Stephens has a great deal of experience in both defending and prosecuting these claims and is known for both her compassion and candor when assessing potential claims. Call Angela Price-Stephens for a free consultation.