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Gross Negligence Attorney in Las Vegas

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Gross Negligence Attorney in Las Vegas

When we seek medical care, our lives are in the hands of the medical professionals we allow to treat us. If these professionals act carelessly or recklessly and cause a medical injury, the consequences can be dire – sometimes impossible to come back from. Patients are often left in pain, wondering what went wrong and who they can hold responsible. If you or a loved one find yourself in this situation, we can help.

A Las Vegas gross negligence attorney with De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers can review the circumstances of your case and determine if your medical injury resulted from a medical professional’s gross negligence. If so, you may be able to sue and recover financial compensation. To learn more, contact our Las Vegas personal injury team for a free consultation.

What Is Medical Malpractice?Negligence Attorney

Medical malpractice is any action performed by a health care provider that falls below the accepted standard of care due to negligence, omission, or improper conduct. If any of these occur and the patient is injured as a result, the patient could legally hold that medical professional accountable.

Doctors and physicians are just one type of medical professionals who can be named in a medical malpractice lawsuit. Others include:

  • Physician assistants
  • Licensed nurses
  • Dentists or dental hygienists
  • Chiropractors
  • Licensed dietitians
  • Optometrists
  • Health care facilities, such as a hospital, clinic, or surgery center
  • Medical laboratory technicians
  • Physical therapists
  • Occupational therapists

Medical malpractice can occur for many reasons, including:

  • Miscommunication
  • Paperwork errors
  • Inadequate staff training
  • Staffing shortages

Nevada Law Defines “Professional Negligence”

Nevada provides its definition of medical negligence under NRS § 41A.015. In this statute, medical negligence is considered to be “professional negligence,” which is defined as “the failure of a provider of health care, in rendering services, to use the reasonable care, skill, or knowledge ordinarily used under similar circumstances by similarly trained and experienced providers of health care.”

Examples of Medical Malpractice

Medical professionals who fail to perform as required can hurt a patient, causing them to suffer temporary and/or permanent injuries that affect the quality of their lives. Examples of medical malpractice include:

  • Birth injuries (before, during, or after childbirth)
  • Leaving surgical tools inside a patient’s body
  • Anesthesia errors
  • Failing to diagnose a patient’s condition correctly or promptly
  • Removing the wrong body part during surgery
  • Performing the wrong surgery
  • Medication errors (such as giving a patient too much or too little medication, or giving them the wrong medication altogether)
  • Failing to order the correct medical tests
  • Failing to monitor a patient or provide them with the proper follow-up treatment
  • Letting a patient leave a medical facility too early

Medical Errors Do Not Always Constitute Malpractice

It is important to note that if a medical professional’s care or treatment leads to or causes an error, it does not automatically mean a patient can sue for medical malpractice. If the medical professional in question met the accepted standard of care for a procedure, they may not face a medical malpractice lawsuit. Unfortunately, this applies even if the patient dies as a result.

What Is Gross Negligence?

Negligence forms the basis of all personal injury cases. If it is hard to prove negligence, then it will likely be hard to prove why an injury occurred. However, not all negligence is the same, and this is especially important to know in a medical malpractice case.

Gross negligence is a legal term describing severely reckless behavior that intentionally disregards another’s safety or well-being and harms them in some way. Gross negligence is different from ordinary (or normal) negligence because of its severity and the role that intent plays.

A person exhibiting ordinary negligence fails to show reasonable care that would keep someone from experiencing harm, injury, or loss. Gross negligence, however, is different from ordinary negligence – the person willfully acts irresponsibly with little to no regard for another, also bringing about harm, injury, or loss. Gross negligence can be characterized as reckless, unreasonable misconduct.

Examples of Gross Negligence in a Medical Setting

When it comes to medical malpractice cases, gross negligence can involve errors that blatantly violate a patient’s rights – especially their right to expect the accepted standard of care for their medical condition. In a health care setting, a nurse forgetting to give a patient their scheduled dose of medication can be viewed as ordinary negligence. But if that same nurse gives a patient a medication they know the patient is allergic to, this action could be viewed as gross negligence.

Other examples of gross negligence in medical malpractice cases include:

  • Failing to inform a patient of important information about a medical procedure
  • Conducting medical procedures while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Discriminating against a patient and denying them the medical care they need
  • Performing an unnecessary surgery on a patient

Generally, medical providers are expected to conduct themselves as professionals who care about their patients. Any action they intentionally take that falls outside of their duties could be cause for gross negligence, and patients may be able to pursue a medical malpractice lawsuit against them.

A Las Vegas Medical Malpractice Case Must Contain Four Elements

In Nevada, injured patients can sue for medical malpractice. They will have to prove the medical professional did not provide the accepted standard of care that another physician (or doctor, nurse, etc.) would provide in similar circumstances.

In order to prove that medical malpractice occurred, a case must satisfy four elements:

  • A physician-patient relationship existed, establishing that the physician owed the patient a duty of care
  • The physician failed to provide the patient with medical care that meets the accepted standard
  • The physician’s carelessness or negligence caused the patient’s injuries
  • The patient suffered compensatory damages because of injuries stemming from the physician’s negligence

A Las Vegas personal injury attorney can help determine if your case qualifies as medical malpractice or gross negligence.

Who Is Liable When Gross Negligence Occurs in a Medical Setting?

A medical professional or health care facility can be held liable if gross negligence occurs. As a report on medical malpractice liability by the Joint Economic Committee of the United States Congress explains, the purpose of medical malpractice insurance is to pay legal defense costs and damages when a medical professional is accused of being negligent.

However, as reported by Emergency Physicians Monthly, medical malpractice insurance companies may deny coverage if a medical professional commits an intentionally reckless act.

Proving Gross Negligence for Insurance Claims

Determining whether a medical injury happened because of ordinary negligence or gross negligence could mean the difference between a patient being compensated or not being compensated for their injuries. Proving medical malpractice can be challenging on its own – but proving that a Las Vegas medical professional was grossly negligent is also challenging. Such a claim may not be covered under the medical provider’s malpractice insurance policy.

These are all matters that a personal injury attorney can help you resolve. If you or a loved one’s medical malpractice occurred in Las Vegas, a gross negligence attorney with De Castroverde Accident & Injury Lawyers can manage your case and fight for the compensation you deserve.

Why Hire Our Attorneys to Handle Your Gross Negligence Case?

Our Las Vegas personal injury attorneys can review the details of your case and help you seek justice through an insurance settlement or court-ordered award. We

will be with you every step of the way, helping you seek the compensation you need to recover from your medical injury.

Gathering Evidence That Proves Gross Negligence or Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice cases are complex and difficult to prove, especially on your own. Our attorneys know how to collect and review evidence that can support and strengthen your case, such as:

  • Medical records
  • Photos or video footage of your injury
  • Documentation of the treatment or medication your condition requires
  • Witness testimony, including your own

We will also consult with an independent health care specialist whose professional opinion can help prove that gross negligence or medical malpractice occurred in your case.

Assessing Your Damages

Patients recovering from medical malpractice face significant financial and non-financial losses tied to their injuries. We can calculate your damages and determine how much compensation you should request from the liable party.

Economic (financial) damages may include:

  • Current and future expenses for medical treatment (such as hospital stays, surgeries, medications, or medical equipment)
  • Lost wages or lost earning capacity due to your injuries

Non-economic (non-financial) damages may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Permanent scarring, disability, or disfigurement
  • Mental anguish
  • Emotional distress

Nevada caps non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases at $350,000, per NRS § 41A.035.

Identifying Potentially Liable Parties and Proving That Gross Negligence Occurred

Another reason that medical malpractice cases are complex is because they may involve more than one liable party. If a team of medical professionals treated you, it can be difficult to pinpoint who made a reckless error or how that error was made. We can recover medical records and other documents to help us determine who was involved in your medical procedure and what their role was.

After we have identified the potentially liable parties, we will set out to prove the elements of negligence mentioned above.

Your Las Vegas Medical Malpractice Case Has a Deadline

You generally have three years from the date of your medical injury to file a lawsuit in Nevada, per NRS § 41A.097. If your injuries appear later, you have one year from the date of discovering the injury to seek legal action.

Designated family members who lost a loved one to injuries that resulted from medical malpractice can seek compensation with a wrongful death lawsuit. Under NRS § 41.085, they have two years to pursue this action. Wrongful death lawsuits can help families recover the deceased’s medical costs, funeral and/or burial expenses, and more.

These deadlines are firm, so protecting your right to sue is important. If you miss the deadline, you could permanently lose your right to seek compensation. Working with a gross negligence attorney from our Las Vegas firm ensures that your case will meet all applicable deadlines.

Call Us Today for a Free ConsultationAlex and Orlando De Castroverde and Kimberly Valentin conversing

If the medical care you received resulted in injuries due to a medical professional’s reckless behavior, we can protect your rights and help you seek compensation. A gross negligence lawyer with De Castroverde is ready to manage your Las Vegas medical malpractice case. We take care of everything – from paperwork and phone calls to dealing with insurers – so you can focus on healing from your injury.

Call our firm today to learn more about your legal options and next steps. Our gross negligence attorneys work on contingency, so you pay nothing up front if we take your case. We only collect a fee when we win compensation for you.

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