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Explaining Virginia Medical Malpractice Law

January 24, 2013 by The Parrish Law Firm

Understanding Virginia medical malpractice law can be confusing, since each state has its own laws dictating what medical malpractice is. Today, we explain some key terms commonly used in medical malpractice claims.

General Terms

Medical malpractice: a negligent act or omission during treatment by a health care provider, which results in injury or death to the patient. Malpractice occurs when the treatment in question fails to meet the standard of care or practice within the medical community.

Standard of care: This refers to the generally accepted practices of medical professionals when treating a patient. The standard of care can vary based on a number of factors, including the patient’s health, age and condition. To win a medical malpractice case, it must be proven that the health care professional in question did not meet the accepted standard of practice for that particular case.

Statute of limitations: The limited time frame in which a medical malpractice suit can be filed. In Virginia, except under some rare circumstances, the statute of limitations is two years. The statute typically begins to run when the injury occurs.

Types of Damages

There are different types of compensation that a victim of medical malpractice can receive, including compensatory, non-economic, and punitive damages.

Compensatory damages are awarded to the patient for items such as current and future medical bills and lost wages, as well as non-economic damages, which cover intangible things like inconvenience and “pain and suffering.”

Punitive damages are awarded to punish a medical professional for their reckless actions that led to the medical malpractice suit.

Parrish Law Firm, PLLC has years of experience working with insurance companies and will use its expertise to obtain compensation from the hospital or doctor responsible for injuries. Call us today at 703-906-4229, or fill out a free case consultation form.

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