Articles Posted in Medical Malpractice

As a trial lawyer analyzing a medical malpractice claim in Georgia, it is important to understand the specific legal framework and requirements in the state. Georgia has its own set of laws and regulations that govern medical malpractice claims. This analysis will provide a general overview of key considerations when evaluating a medical malpractice claim in Georgia.

  1. Standard of Care: The first step in assessing a medical malpractice claim is determining whether the healthcare provider breached the standard of care. In Georgia, the standard of care is defined as the level of care, skill, and treatment that is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by similar healthcare providers in the same or similar circumstances. Expert testimony from a qualified medical expert is usually required to establish the applicable standard of care and demonstrate its breach.  If the case involves emergency care provided in a hospital emergency department, then the standard of care is gross negligence; a higher standard of care that involves proving the claim by clear and convincing evidence.  In general, an individual that practices surgery or the administration of medicine must exercise a reasonable degree of care and skill and and resulting injury from a lack Any injury  of such care and skill shall be a tort for which a recovery may be had. O.C.G.A. 51-1-27.
  2. Statute of Limitations: It is crucial to consider the statute of limitations for filing a medical malpractice claim in Georgia. Generally, in Georgia, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of the alleged malpractice or from the date the injury was discovered, but it should not exceed five years from the date of the incident. However, there are exceptions and nuances to the statute of limitations, such as cases involving minors or cases where the injury was not immediately apparent. It is essential to consult the specific statutes and seek legal advice to determine the precise deadline in a particular case.

hammer-to-fall-1223606-300x199As a Georgia medical malpractice and wrongful death attorney, I understand the importance of gathering strong evidence to support a claim. Building a solid case requires comprehensive documentation and proof that negligence or wrongful actions led to harm or injury. Here are some important pieces of evidence that you should consider for your claim:

  1. Medical Records: Obtain and review all relevant medical records, including hospital charts, doctor’s notes, test results, and treatment plans. These records provide crucial information about the standard of care provided and any deviations from it
  2. Expert Opinions: Consult with qualified medical experts who can review the case and provide their professional opinion on the standard of care. Their expert testimony can help establish whether the healthcare provider’s actions or omissions fell below the accepted standard and directly caused the injury.

blood-glucose-measure-diabetes-check-1195289-300x225My client was a known diabetic when she came to treat at an urgent care facility in Georgia. She clearly presented with symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea for 4 days, fatigued, lightheaded, weak, short of breath and reported unintentional weight loss, etc.) that could be the result of hyperglycemia and/or diabetic ketoacidosis. Unfortunately, the attending advanced practice registered nurse failed to perform a proper differential diagnosis.

In particular, the nurse failed to: 1) order glucose testing based on patient presentation, medical history and available urinalysis results; 2) recognize and diagnose symptoms of diabetic ketoacidosis, a life-threatening medical complication of diabetes mellitus; and 3) provide appropriate medical care including intravenous insulin and/or referral to higher level of care including emergency department or hospital admission.  If the nurse had followed proper diabetic protocol and differential diagnosis, then my client would be alive today.

The nurse presumed the patient was dehydrated due to her illness and provided intravenous fluid replacement.  She later released my client without further diagnostic work up, treatment or referral to a higher level of care. Therefore, the resulting breaches in the standard of care prevented our client from receiving appropriate assessment and care for her condition which would have included management of hyperglycemia in the clinic or referral to a higher level of care, such as emergency room or hospital admission via EMS.  Combined, the failure to diagnose diabetic ketoacidosis caused a critical delay of care resulting in the untimely death of my client. Unfortunately, this breach of the standard of care proximately caused the death of my client  – simply put, the nurse should have sent my client to the ICU for an insulin drip.

Contact Information