Picture of R. David Sammons and R. Shannon Carpenter

Atlanta, Georgia Medical Malpractice Attorneys

As experienced Atlanta, Georgia Medical Malpractice Attorneys, the legal team at Sammons & Carpenter knows just how difficult it can be to bring a medical malpractice case in the State of Georgia.  The law is very complicated and the medicine can be very difficult to understand.  Furthermore, medical malpractice claims can take a variety of forms.  As such, it is not an area in which injured patients should try to represent themselves. Instead, you should turn to an Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer who has experience with the legal and scientific technicalities of malpractice claims.  At Sammons & Carpenter our attorneys have over 20 years of combined experience handling a variety of medical malpractice lawsuits.

According to a July 2012 editorial in the New York Times, medical errors cause an estimated 200,000 deaths per year in the United States. This reflects a significant increase from a 1999 estimate indicating that around 98,000 deaths could be tied to medical mistakes. Unfortunately, this increase in patient deaths is likely driven both by doctors having less time to spend with patients and by doctors increasing the number of potentially risky tests and procedures that patients undergo.

Death as a result of a medical error is only one possible outcome. Many who are victims of medical mistakes will suffer injuries that require additional medical care and that cause them pain. Others will be improperly diagnosed and will be made to submit to treatment they don’t need and/or deprived of treatment they do.

Any type of medical error can have very serious lifelong consequences and, in some cases, can even cause death. Any type of medical error should also prompt you to contact an Atlanta medical malpractice lawyer right away.

Types of Atlanta Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice takes a variety of different forms including:
The consequences of these and other types of medical malpractice will vary. For instance, misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis can be devastating when a patient has an illness that must be treated right away.  A 2008 Wired.com article, for example, indicated that a cancer patient who gets early treatment could have a 90 percent cure rate while a patient who has a late diagnosis may have as little as a 10 percent chance of survival.

Filing an Atlanta Georgia Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Under the laws in Georgia, healthcare providers cannot simply make errors and leave patients and their families stuck footing the bill and coping with the emotional and physical costs. Instead, patients and family members who have suffered injuries have the right to file a medical malpractice lawsuit against a healthcare provider who has harmed them. A variety of different types of healthcare providers can be sued for medical negligence including:
  • Doctors
  • Hospitals
  • Nurses
  • Nurse practitioners or nurse midwifes
  • Dentists
  • Chiropractors
  • Midwifes
  • Surgeons
  • Anesthesiologists
  • Pharmacists
  • Clinical pathology laboratories
These and other health professionals have a professional duty of care. This means that they are expected to provide care to patients that is up-to-par with what a reasonable health professional in their field and practice area would provide. When substandard and unreasonably poor care is offered instead, the healthcare professional can be held legally accountable.

In order to sue, however, patients will need to prove four different things:
  1. That the healthcare provider owed them a duty of care
  2. That the provider breached that duty
  3. That the breach was the direct cause of harm
  4. That the harm led to compensable damages (i.e. there were losses that money can compensate the victim for)
Specifically applied to medical malpractice claims, this means that a plaintiff’s healthcare provider—whether doctor, dentist, surgeon, therapist, other healthcare professional, or someone working under the direct supervision of such a professional—either committed an act or failed to perform an act in a way that fell below the accepted standard of practice in the applicable medical community with respect to patient care. Further, this act or omission led to the injury or death of the patient that resulted in material damages.

Because the standard of care is defined by the “accepted standard” within a given community, this means that what constitutes medical malpractice may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, and may also depend greatly upon the particular field of expertise and the particular treatment being addressed. As a result, whether or not you have a valid medical malpractice claim is not always an easy answer—what may constitute medical malpractice in one community may not be deemed sufficient for malpractice in another community.

While this disparity in standards may seem peculiar from the perspective of an injured plaintiff, the reason for this rule in the law has social practicality and benefits. As an example, a country doctor confronted with a serious medical injury that requires immediate emergency care cannot necessarily be expected to deal with the injury as competently in his small rural office as a full surgical staff in an inner city hospital with a well-equipped emergency care facility. A rule that failed to account for disparate conditions would penalize certain providers for choosing to serve communities that may be in dire need of medical care professionals.

Accordingly, medical malpractice claims serve an important public function: the availability of a malpractice cause of action helps to ensure that providers diligently meet high standards of care, but the community standard provision encourages health professionals to willingly meet the needs of underserved communities. In hiring an attorney to represent you in a medical malpractice claim, it is important that you retain an attorney who understands the different standards that may be at play, and who can evaluate the likelihood of recovery for your particular claim.

How Can an Atlanta Medical Malpractice Lawyer Help in Medical Negligence Claims?

There are many reasons why you should consult with a qualified Atlanta Medical Malpractice Attorney if you feel you are the victim of medical negligence.  Medical malpractice is a complicated legal area and it is not an area in which injured patients should try to represent themselves. Instead, you should turn to an Atlanta medical malpractice attorney who has experience with the legal and scientific technicalities of malpractice claims.

Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers provide a variety of important legal services to clients. At Sammons & Carpenter, for example, we help clients with all of the following aspects of medical malpractice cases:
  • Evaluating your case and making a recommendation on whether you have a potential malpractice claim
  • Determining what defendant(s) can be sued and potentially held responsible for malpractice. Sometimes, for example both a doctor and hospital could be sued.
  • Gathering evidence to demonstrate that the healthcare provider was negligent and that you were hurt as a result.
  • Helping to line up expert witnesses to testify on your behalf
  • Assisting in proving the extent of your damages
  • Negotiating a settlement with the healthcare provider and/or his malpractice insurance company
  • Representing you in court if necessary to get you the money you deserve
These are just some of the legal services our Atlanta medical malpractice lawyers provide to clients who have been hurt by healthcare providers. At Sammons & Carpenter, we firmly believe that patients have the right to good medical care and that they should be able to trust their doctors will act in a safe and informed manner. When a patient’s trust in the medical profession is betrayed by negligence or mistake, we work diligently to help ensure the patient doesn’t have to bear the loss but instead that the doctor is made to pay.

Getting Legal Help

If you believe you may have a valid claim for medical malpractice, the Medical Malpractice Attorneys at Sammons & Carpenter, P.C., can help you. Our attorneys are experienced in pursing medical malpractice claims in the state of Georgia. If you would like a free consultation to discuss your situation, contact our Atlanta Medical Malpractice Attorneys right away at (404) 991-5950, or use our confidential online case evaluation form here on this site. Your consultation is free, and, if we agree to take your case, we will not charge you any legal fees unless and until we recover damages for you. With every consultation, your information is completely confidential, and you have no obligation. Talk to one of our experienced attorneys to find out about the legal considerations that apply to your case, and to obtain an honest evaluation of your potential for recovery in a medical malpractice claim.

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