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Medical malpractice occurs when a physician or other medical professional fails to comply with the standard of care in their profession and causes harm to the patient. If you have been harmed due to medical negligence, you should consult with an attorney who is experienced with your state’s medical malpractice laws.

Elements of Medical Malpractice Law

There are certain requirements that must be met in order for you to have an actionable malpractice case:

  • The existence of a care relationship. The initial step in establishing malpractice is showing that there was a doctor-patient relationship at the time the injury occurred. In order to be liable for malpractice, the alleged harm must have been caused by a physician or medical professional performing their job duties.
  • Medical negligence is provable. It isn’t enough for harm or discomfort to have occurred. For a claim to be established, it must be proven that the harm to the patient was caused by actions that did not meet the standard of care of a medical professional. Therefore, if the care given was not within the standard of care, an actionable malpractice suit may exist. In West Virginia, an expert medical witness is required to demonstrate what the standard of care in the profession is. It then must be shown that the medical professional did not meet this standard.
  • Injury resulting from medical negligence. Because patients are often in the hospital because of an injury or illness, it must be shown that the harm in question was caused by medical negligence and not simply a result of the patient’s illness. This is often established by consulting with another physician to determine whether lack of proper medical care caused the injury in question causal factor in the injury.
  • Damages resulted from the injury. Even if all of the previous criteria are met, it must be established that the patient suffered actual damages and harm as the result of the doctor’s failure to meet the standard of care. Injuries can take different forms, including physical pain, loss of wages due to injury, emotional or mental pain, and resultant additional medical costs. In West Virginia, there is a cap on non-economic damages (such as pain and suffering) of $250,000 in most cases.

Types of Medical Malpractice Cases

There are many types of medical malpractice cases. Some of the most common malpractice cases involve the following situations:

  • Improper diagnosis. If a patient’s illness or injury was not properly diagnosed, and this resulted in additional harm or death to the patient, this may be the basis of a malpractice claim if the medical professional should have made the correct diagnosis under the profession’s standard of care.
  • Wrong treatment. If the patient is treated for an illness or injury in a manner that doesn’t comply with the current standard of care in the medical profession, they may have a malpractice claim.
  • Failure to communicate the risks of treatment. Your doctor must inform you of the possible risks of a treatment before they administer it. If you are harmed by a risk that you weren’t informed of beforehand, you may have a malpractice claim against the physician.


Webb Law Centre, PLLC practices in the area of medical malpractice and hospital negligence, and we will travel to any hospital, or any place in the state, to meet with representatives of those who have been injured or died as a result of hospital or medical negligence. Attorney Rusty Webb offers a free consultation to discuss your medical malpractice claim, and you will only pay attorney fees if you receive a recovery. Contact Webb Law Centre today to discuss your case.