Medical Malpractice and Wrongful Death: Do They Mean the Same Thing?

One of the most common questions people have when they speak with a law firm is about the difference between medical malpractice and wrongful death. There are some people who believe these two terms cover the same thing. Even though it is true that these terms do have some overlap, there are a few differences that people need to know as well.

First, it is important to cover medical malpractice. This takes place when a healthcare provider, such as a doctor or a nurse, is negligent. This negligence has to lead to harm to the patient. When discussing medical malpractice, many people refer to the “Ds.” The provider has to have deviated from his or her duty to the patient. Then, this deviation has to result in damage. There are numerous types of medical malpractice. Some of the most common examples include:

  • Surgical mistakes
  • Overlooking a diagnosis of some type
  • Abuse that takes place in a nursing home
  • Mistakes involving medications
  • Birth injuries

Even though medical malpractice can result in the death of the patient in rare circumstances, not all types of medical malpractice lead to a patient’s death.

Of course, given the name, wrongful death has to result in the debt of someone. Therefore, it is possible that medical malpractice may lead to a wrongful death. On the other hand, not all forms of wrongful that involve medical malpractice. In addition to medical malpractice, there are numerous other situations where wrongful death might result. For example, some of the other examples include:

  • Negligence leading to a motor vehicle accident that results in the death of someone
  • Defective medical devices that might result in someone’s death
  • Consuming recalled food at a restaurant or a grocery store that results in the death of someone

Therefore, even though it is possible that wrongful death and medical malpractice can cover the same event, this is not always the case. There are a lot of nuances that accompany medical malpractice cases as well as wrongful death cases. Therefore, it is important for anyone with questions or concerns to rely on the help of a trained legal professional who has experience in both of these areas. Everyone deserves to have their rights defended.