What is the Difference Between Medical Malpractice and Medical Negligence?

What is the Difference Between Medical Malpractice and Medical Negligence?

People always make mistakes in their routines, personal life, and work. But, a mistake in the medical and healthcare field is a bit more serious. Thus, an injury to a patient they use the term medical negligence or medical malpractice. These injuries may be mild, moderate, or severe, putting the patient’s life in danger.

People harmed while undergoing medical treatment often wonder what their options might be. It helps to jog your memory up to the beginning of the events leading up to the injury.

What Is Medical Negligence?

Medical negligence occurs when a health care provider causes harm to a patient unknowingly due to ignorance. Or not taking action where required at the right time. This is quite common when prescribing medications and ignoring drug interactions and side effects in patients. Another example is puncturing an organ or administering an incorrect dose of anesthesia to the patient during surgery. There are many similar examples, but any of these mistakes that can cause mild or severe harm to a patient due to ignorance on the doctor’s part is known as medical negligence. The doctor or healthcare provider does not have ill intentions or harm the patient on purpose in this case.

What Is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice occurs when the doctor or health care provider is aware of the potential harm of their actions over their patients and proceeds anyway. This is very common during surgeries when certain medical equipment is not properly sterilized, and cutting corners can result in serious infections in the patient. Another example of medical malpractice occurs when the doctor over-prescribes medication or prescribes the wrong medication knowingly. This can result in addiction and overdose, and severe complications in patients.

Remember that the patient’s pain or injury must not be severe or life-threatening to qualify as malpractice or negligence. If they feel that they have been wronged or hurt as a result of the actions of a healthcare provider, they must discuss with a medical lawyer to determine if their situation warrants legal action. This is why it is a good idea to be aware of how to proceed should a situation like this arise.

Can An Incident Be Both Malpractice As Well As Negligence?

Sometimes, it can be hard to draw the line between medical malpractice and medical negligence. If a mistake occurs that leads to an injury; a significant investigation would be required to determine where to classify the situation. A medical malpractice attorney would ask the following questions:

  • What were the events that led up to the accident?
  • Did the healthcare provider know that the action would have consequences beforehand?
  • Were there any protocols to prevent the accident from occurring, and were they ignored?
  • Was the healthcare provider trying to do the best he could at that time to treat the patient?
  • Was it an honest mistake that could have happened to anybody?

While all the above questions are difficult, they carry a certain amount of weight and can make or break a medical lawsuit against the health care provider. This is why getting as many details as possible is important.

What Kind Of Compensation Can You Expect As A Result?

If you feel that you have been a victim of medical malpractice or negligence, you can take the following steps:

Speak To The Medical Team Or Board

You can bring your concerns to the medical team, as they have relevant people who work on these cases. They might be able to assist you and help you understand what might have happened.

Contact The Relevant Licensing Board

You may bring your concerns to the relevant licensing board in your state in case you want to learn more about how to proceed with your case

Contact A Medical Malpractice Lawyer And Discuss Your Options

You may contact a medical malpractice attorney and explain your situation to them so that they can help you weigh your options. They would also assess whether your situation qualifies as malpractice and what kind of compensation you can expect.

Medical malpractice and negligence can affect you financially, physically as well as emotionally and a lawyer can help assess your situation from the beginning and evaluate the damage it has caused you. they will then assign a value to your damages and bring them to the insurance company of the medical provider. Depending on your case, You are eligible to receive compensation for the following:


The pain, suffering, and distress that the patient underwent as a result of your injury would have to be rewarded and made up for.

Loss Of Ability To Earn In The Future

If, as a result of the injury you have lost the ability to continue working and earning an income for your future, you could seek compensation for lost wages and the damages incurred to future earning potential.

Medical Costs

There would be additional costs to pay for medical bills, doctor visits, medical prescriptions, therapy, and corrective surgery. As a consequence of the injury and harm that has been caused to you due to malpractice.

Loss Of Consortium

In case of the loss of a family member due to medical negligence, the family members would receive compensation due to a wrongful death claim.

The Final Word

Medical malpractice and negligence are similar in definition and it is sometimes difficult to draw a line between the two. In medical negligence, the health care provider is unaware of the potential harm caused by their mistake and is considered an unintentional accident, whereas medical malpractice is when the doctor is aware of the potential threat of their action and proceeds anyway. If you are a victim of medical malpractice or are just curious to know more, visit Spirit One blog for more information on personal injury law and others.

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