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Medical Negligence Attorneys

Medical Malpractice Attorneys: Is Delayed Diagnosis Negligence?

No doubt, for serious and obvious malpractice such as surgical gloves left in the patient or the wrong leg amputated, one will want to take legal steps against the institution or practitioner for medical negligence. Injuries and damages related to delayed diagnosis, however, may not immediately be visible or associated with the delayed diagnosis. But should you still approach medical negligence attorneys for legal guidance?

The answer is yes. If you delay in taking legal action against a practitioner for medical negligence within three years from the date of the incident, you risk not being able to get compensation for the damages suffered. To this end, attorneys help to determine whether you have sufficient grounds to claim compensation and whether enough evidence is available to ensure successful legal action against the practitioner or institution.

Not all delayed diagnosis instances constitute negligence. To qualify as malpractice, certain requirements must be met, as briefly explained below.

Duty of Care

There must have been a health practitioner and patient relationship. A duty of care must thus have been applicable.

Harm and Damages

You must have been harmed because of the delayed diagnosis and must have suffered damages. Medical law attorneys can help to determine whether or not the requirement has been met.

The injury must have been the result of the negligence by the practitioner and not because of the patient. If you, for instance, withheld important information that could have made a difference in the diagnosis of the condition, it may be difficult to prove that the practitioner was at fault. If the practitioner followed the correct procedure and provided a reasonable standard of care as relevant to the situation, it may be difficult to prove negligence.

What to Do If You Suspect That the Delayed Diagnosis Caused Injuries and Damages

Keep all receipts and invoices related to medical treatment for the condition. Also keep all receipts and payment records for travelling costs, hospitalisation, doctor visits, medication, and treatment. Keep salary slips, employment letters, and UIF claim documents if you have suffered a loss of income because of the inability to work related to the condition not diagnosed and treated in due time.

Keep a record of communication with your medical aid, the insurance company, and the health practitioner or institution. Write a summary of what happened, when it happened, and how it affected your health and ability to enjoy life. Collect all the relevant contact details. The information you collect will be relevant when you consult with the malpractice attorneys.

Make an appointment with personal injury or medical negligence attorneys for assessment of the particular instance to help determine the merits of your claim. Don’t delay in getting legal guidance. Get in touch with Adele van der Walt Incorporated.

Disclaimer: Information in this article is not intended as legal advice and is only for informational purposes. Please seek legal guidance from Adele van der Walt Incorporated before relying on this information to make any legal decisions. September 2020

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