What is Medical Negligence in Georgia?

On Behalf of | May 26, 2022 | Firm News

Simply put, it’s negligence by a medical professional.

Sounds pretty simple right?  Until you unpack the word “negligence” in the medical context.

For a layperson, “negligence” just means carelessness. In a car accident, or some other ordinary case, the defendant is judged on whether they used ordinary care.  If they weren’t as careful as an ordinary reasonable person, then they’re negligent.  At trial, the jury can decide if the defendant was negligent without hearing from expert witnesses.

On the other hand, doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals have years of specialized training and education. They have medical knowledge and skill beyond an ordinary layperson’s.  Under Georgia law, they’re required to use the care that a similar medical professional would under similar conditions. These subjects are outside the knowledge of the laypeople sitting on the jury. So, in Georgia, the jury needs expert witnesses to explain the “standard of care” and how the medical defendant failed to follow it.  This is how negligence is judged in Georgia Medical Malpractice cases.

Because expert witnesses are required in every Georgia Medical Malpractice case to determine negligence, these cases are often complicated and expensive.  Many times, more than one medical specialty is involved, requiring separate experts in each specialty.  It’s always a challenge to find medical experts who are leaders in their fields, willing to get involved in a legal case against one of their colleagues. They are usually practicing doctors with high patient and teaching loads.  It takes an experienced medical malpractice lawyer to find the right medical experts, provide them with the material they need, and present their testimony.

If you believe you or a family member has suffered an injury from Medical Malpractice, please call us.  We’re here to discuss what happened, to gather information, and to advise you on your legal options. The call is free and always confidential.