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What is a breach of medical duty of care?

When visiting a medical institution, you expect your condition to be made better and not worse. Generally, this is what happens and doctors will diagnose you and administer the appropriate course of treatment. 

Unfortunately, this isn’t always how patient treatment goes. Doctors owe their patients a duty of care. This means that they must act in a way that falls in line with the expected standards of the profession. 

What amounts to a breach of medical duty of care? 

Failure to diagnose

From the moment a doctor examines you, they owe you a duty of care. The first step is generally to diagnose the problem. Sometimes, this can be done with a quick conversation. In other cases, the doctor will need to run a series of medical tests. If the doctor feels out of their depth, they have a duty to refer you to someone who can make a diagnosis. 

A failure to diagnose could be a form of medical malpractice. This includes making a wrongful diagnosis, missing a diagnosis or delaying a diagnosis. 

Prescribing the wrong type of treatment 

Diagnosis is only one part of medical treatment. A doctor needs to address the health issue by prescribing the appropriate course of treatment. This may be medication, surgery or another form of medicine. 

Health conditions can be made worse if doctors administer the wrong type of medication or the wrong dosage. The same can be said if a patient is forced to go through surgery when it was not necessary. 

There is nothing more important than your health. If a doctor has failed to help you or has made your condition worse, then you may be entitled to compensation. Seek legal guidance to find out more about medical malpractice cases.