Every qualified professional who works in the medical field has a responsibility to provide the same standard of care to every patient as any reasonable person with their same level of experience would. That responsibility applies just as much to physical therapists as it does to primary care physicians, nurses, surgeons, and other healthcare providers. Unfortunately, negligent conduct by physical therapists can cause serious harm to numerous New York State residents each year.

If you suffered avoidable physical harm during rehabilitative care, speaking with a Poughkeepsie rehabilitation and physical therapy malpractice lawyer should be a priority. You may have a right to financial compensation for every negative effect this incident has on you. Doing this effectively can be next to impossible without guidance from a seasoned medical malpractice attorney.

What Actions Could Constitute Physical Therapy Malpractice?

As opposed to the legal concept of “negligence” that is central to most other types of personal injury litigation, medical malpractice claims are generally built around the concept of a “standard of care”. In other words, the care that an equally qualified doctor would provide under the same or similar circumstances. The applicable standard for care differs for every type of healthcare provider, as well as in different situations. It does allow some leeway for small mistakes given the nature of medicine as a science.

However, if a physical therapist or rehabilitative care provider causes harm to someone whom they are treating, by acting in a way that a reasonable and competent professional would not have, they may be found liable for losses stemming from their breach of the standard of care. Common examples of legally actionable negligence by physical therapists include:

  • Leaving patients unsupervised during exercises and/or while using equipment
  • Using equipment that is broken or in poor condition
  • Dropping patients during exercises
  • Failing to fully disclose possible risks and complications of specific treatments prior to starting them
  • Not listening to patients who say that certain exercises are too painful

A Poughkeepsie rehabilitation and PT malpractice attorney could explain how cases like this work in more specific detail during an initial consultation.

Recoverable Damages in a Rehabilitation Malpractice Claim

If negligent care by a physical therapist leads to their patient aggravating their injury or sustaining a new injury, the costs of all necessary medical care to address the physical damage done could be factored into a settlement demand or lawsuit. If the injury is severe enough that it keeps the patient out of work or prolongs the period of time they will have to stay out of work, the full value of lost wages and/or future earning capacity could be recoverable as well.

Damages may additionally be non-economic in nature, ranging from physical pain and suffering to long-term lost quality of life due to a newfound permanent disability. Once again, a rehabilitation and physical therapy malpractice lawyer in Poughkeepsie could clarify on a case-by-case basis what specific losses might be compensable in a particular scenario.

Contact a Poughkeepsie Rehabilitation and Physical Therapy Malpractice Attorney Today

Physical therapy is a crucial part of the healing process for both soft tissue injuries and certain surgical operations. An injury sustained during this process because of a healthcare provider’s negligence can set your recovery back months, costing you money and causing numerous physical and personal losses on top of that.

In a situation like this, financial recovery through civil litigation could be your best option for protecting your future best interests. Get in touch with a Poughkeepsie rehabilitation and physical therapy malpractice lawyer today to learn more.