Medical malpractice not limited to physicians

As Florida patients may know, medical professionals and other healthcare providers may be held liable for damages suffered by a patient if negligence contributed to a victim’s injury. In addition to a practitioner, a lawsuit might include the hospital or a drug manufacturer as a defendant in certain medical malpractice cases.

Hospitals, whether privately or publicly operated, are responsible for what occurs in the facility and may be involved in the injury a patient suffers. For example, they may be held accountable for negligence due to inadequate staffing or held liable for the negligence of their employees. A hospital is required to screen employees to assure that their credentials and licensing are in order. Failing to do that makes them liable under a corporate negligence umbrella if a patient is injured. A hospital, as an employer, may also be liable if the employees are negligent in their duties.

In addition, hospitals are mandated under state and federal laws to not refuse anyone who is seriously ill based on the fact they are unable to pay. If they do, they may be held legally accountable for damages stemming from the refusal.

In some cases, drug manufacturers might also be named in medical malpractice cases. The physician, as a learned intermediary, is obligated to inform the patient of risks involved with taking certain medication and generally bare the most liability. However, pharmaceutical companies have an obligation to make a safe product and to notify physicians of side effects, problems with the medications and other issues, as they arise. If the companies fail in these duties, they might be liable.

When a patient files a medical malpractice suit, an attorney may offer insight into expansion of the suit to others involved in the patient’s care. The attorney may help the injured patient in broadening the suit as the client attempts to recover damages.

SourceFindlaw, “Medical Malpractice: Who Can Be Sued?“, August 01, 2014