Medical negligence claims evolve from polluted medical care. The allegedly substandard care leaves a carbon footprint which can be traced to its origins. Experience with common themes in medical malpractice lawsuits, and an intimate, first-hand knowledge of what proper healthcare delivery actually involves, allows a prospective analysis of negligence claims with the intent to avoid litigation, rather than sustaining the scars of a trial-and-error education.
This paper explores the standards of review that apply to medical care under the scrutiny of patients, prosecutors, providers, and payers. Critical questions are whether a layperson's quality-of-care standard is the same as the legal standard, and whether or not either of those are the same as the medical community's proscribed clinical guidelines, compared to management's interpretation of best practices, as measured by federal and state-mandated metrics.
Rather than merely redefining the problem, solutions to avoid medical negligence claims are offered and explained. Shared responsibility between clinician, administration, and patient is key. Finally, examples are presented to show how seemingly innocuous acts or omissions can lead to medical negligence claims that cause damages to patients, providers, and payers alike.