The Role of Experts in Florida Cancer Misdiagnosis Lawsuits
If you’re seeking to enforce your rights in a medical malpractice claim based upon the failure to properly diagnose cancer, the legal process will almost certainly involve one or more medical experts in your case. Not only does Florida law require expert testimony in order to prove a medical malpractice case, it also requires you to have a medical expert opine on your case before you even file a lawsuit. In addition to the legal requirements, experts are a useful tool in assisting jurors to understand technical scientific topics that aren’t within the wheelhouse of most laypeople.
As such, medical experts play a critical role in a malpractice claim for a number of reasons. At Freidin Brown, P.A., we handle every aspect of hiring experts, providing them with your medical records, and working with them to formulate their opinions. You can trust an experienced Florida failure to diagnose cancer lawyer to handle the details, but you may find it helpful to understand how experts help your case.
Proof in a Cancer Malpractice Claim: At its core, a medical malpractice case is a negligence claim. Health care providers are held to a certain standard under Florida law, and if they deviate from it when offering treatment, a patient may be entitled to recover monetary damages. The key is looking at what another doctor would have done when faced with the same circumstances, assuming that he or she was in the same specialty (e.g., oncology, OBGYN, etc.) as the physician who treated you. In a failure to diagnose cancer case, the specific question is whether the hypothetical heath care provider would have properly identified your ailment and taken the appropriate action.
Expert Witnesses in Medical Malpractice Cases: Unless they’re in health care, members of a jury probably don’t have a sufficient medical background to know what a reasonably prudent doctor would have done in your situation. As such, your attorney will rely on an expert to explain the medical issues in the case and tell the jury what a reasonably prudent nurse or physician would have done. There are certain requirements that this person must meet in order to testify about the standard of care in a failure to diagnose cancer case.
The primary inquiry is whether the expert works in the same medical specialty as the doctor or nurse who treated you. The proposed medical expert must also have spent time practicing or teaching medicine in that specialty in the past three years. The point of this requirement is to avoid encouraging physicians to be professional witnesses.
Characteristics of an Effective Medical Expert Witness: Even if an expert meets the statutory requirements, it’s also important to retain a professional who is effective as a witness. Your attorney will choose a physician who can:Be persuasive to a jury
- Describe in detail the errors that led to a failure to diagnose cancer
- Explain your physical and emotional suffering from the misdiagnosis
Contact a Florida Medical Malpractice Attorney About Failure to Diagnose Cancer
Medical malpractice victims have legal rights under Florida law, especially in situations where a nurse or physician should have diagnosed cancer – but failed to act as a reasonably prudent nurse or physician. Our team at Freidin Brown, P.A. has decades of combined experience pursuing such claims, and we rely on our knowledgeable medical experts for help. Please contact our offices in Miami or Fort Myers to set up a free consultation today. We can advise you on your available remedies once we review the details of your case.