Providing safe quality patient care requires a doctor or other medical professional’s full attention. You are not selfish for believing your doctor should only be focused on you when they are evaluating or treating you.

In certain unfortunate cases, your doctor may be focusing on their phone or another electronic device while attending to your medical needs. Similar to distracted driving, distracted doctoring in a Kingston medical malpractice case can have devastating effects, potentially resulting in catastrophic medical and surgical errors.

As a patient who suffers damages from distracted doctoring, you deserve justice and fair compensation. It may be worth speaking with a dedicated medical malpractice attorney who could help you pursue your injury claim.

Defining Distracted Doctoring in Kingston

Whether a person was under anesthesia in the operating room or merely in for a checkup in their doctor’s office, individuals typically anticipate the full attention of the physician. When doctors take their attention away from a patient and focus it on smartphones or other electronic devices instead, distracted doctoring could occur.

Medical malpractice lawsuits for distracted doctoring in Kingston are becoming increasingly common, just as both the ownership and use of smartphones and other devices are. While technology is no doubt highly beneficial to patients, it can also be a drawback when it comes to the behavior of their physician and other medical professionals who care for them.

Why Might Distracted Doctoring Occur?

Doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals undergo years of training and education to earn the right to treat patients. However, they are still humans and subject to distractions and other factors that may take their mind off their work, potentially leading to errors.

Even providers who are performing routine procedures such as physical examinations or setting a broken bone must keep their minds and eyes on their work. Thinking about another patient, wondering where they will have dinner that night, or even family troubles may all contribute to distracted doctoring. The consequences of these distractions can be disastrous, and patients have the right to an attentive and engaged medical professional.

How Could a Lawyer Prove Distracted Doctoring?

In many cases, the idea that a doctor was distracted while providing care was obvious. However, medical professionals are subject to different rules of conduct compared to other types of workers. State law governs the appropriate standard of care and proving a violation of that standard of care is a job for a qualified medical expert witness.

To prevail in a claim for damages due to distracted doctoring in Kingston, plaintiffs must rely on the opinion and testimony of these experts. In fact, a plaintiff cannot even file a complaint in court seeking damages without the aid of such experts. According to the New York Civil Practice Law & Rules §3012-A, a plaintiff’s demand for compensation must include an affidavit declaring that the plaintiff’s attorney has reviewed the facts of the case with at least one medical expert and that the expert has helped the attorney to conclude that there is a reasonable basis for the lawsuit.

Who Qualifies as an Expert Witness in a Distracted Doctoring Malpractice Case?

The laws in Kingston are open-ended when it comes to deciding whether a plaintiff’s expert is qualified to provide their opinion concerning the defendant’s negligence. There is no specific statute that provides qualifying factors for these witnesses. However, it could benefit a plaintiff to work with an expert who is able to speak about how distracted doctoring could have occurred.

If the distracted doctoring resulted in a misinterpretation of an X-ray, the plaintiff’s expert should be a certified radiologist. The qualifications of the expert are still subject to the usual rules concerning expert certification in the federal rules of evidence. A Kingston medical malpractice attorney could help victims choose an expert that fills the necessary role.

Damages Caused by Distracted Doctoring

A successful lawsuit will end with either a fair settlement or a court award for the plaintiff’s damages, which could either be economic or non-economic in nature. A medical malpractice attorney could help plaintiffs of distracted doctoring in Kingston determine which damages they suffer from and how much compensation they could recover through a personal injury case.

Economic damages are the financial impacts a patient experiences due to the distracted doctoring that occurred. They are objective, and their value is usually easy to specifically define. These damages typically include additional medical bills, lost wages, as well as legal and transportation fees.

Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are often challenging to prove, as they are subjective and do not have an assigned value. They could include pain and suffering, loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, and mental anguish.

Time Constraints in a Distracted Doctoring Case

Plaintiffs in Kingston have a limited amount of time to pursue justice for distracted doctoring through a medical malpractice lawsuit. As per New York Civil Practice Law and Rules §214-a, plaintiffs or their lawyers have a time limit of two years and six months to file such a case in civil court.

Many plaintiffs wonder why this deadline, which is known as the statute of limitations, is in effect. If no deadline were in place, lawsuits could be filed over events that happened more than a decade ago. The defendant would have a disadvantage as they may not have the evidence or the memory needed to refute the plaintiff’s claims. Given the deadline for filing a claim, plaintiffs should consider contacting a diligent attorney immediately.

Call About Kingston Medical Malpractice Lawsuits Based on Distracted Doctoring

If you are an individual who experienced distracted doctoring, you may be wondering how to put your life back together. There are qualified attorneys who could be available to take on your case and help you hold the responsible party accountable. Any compensation you may receive could help you pay medical bills and make up for any lost wages you may have suffered.

Since your legal options and rights will not last forever, the sooner you reach out for help, the better. Talk to a lawyer today to find out if you have valid grounds to recover for distracted doctoring in a Kingston medical malpractice case.