Medical negligence is also called medical malpractice. Medical negligence is where injury occurs to a patient because of error by a medical professional or medical facility (i.e., doctor, nurse, medical technician, psychiatrist, hospital, or healthcare facility). There are patient safety rules in medicine called “standard of practice.” Medical professionals who violate a safety rule are responsible for the harms and losses.
A bad outcome isn’t always from medical negligence. A medical professional can’t always cure a patient nor guarantee a good outcome after treatment. The medical professional has to provide safe and appropriate care. Cause of some bad outcomes are unknown, and doctors aren’t required to be correct with every diagnosis if they do their job and adhere to patient safety rules. Misdiagnosis becomes medical negligence or malpractice if the doctor fails to get a medical history, order appropriate tests, or recognize observable symptoms of illness.
In Michigan, a lawsuit for medical negligence may be brought against a licensed medical professional. M.C.L. § 600.2912. In a medical malpractice case, the plaintiff (i.e., patient) has to prove: (1) the standard of practice; (2) violation of a patient safety rule by the medical professional; (3) injury; and (4) connection between the violation and injury.