Cleveland Medical Malpractice Attorney Explains Psychiatric Malpractice June 11, 2012.

Psychiatric malpractice is a serious legal claim that you are making against a medical professional. If you are going to succeed in fighting your case, you have to understand the legalities behind this type of claim and how those laws affect your specific case. You will boost your chance of a successful case by hiring a Cleveland medical malpractice attorney.

Although the laws may vary slightly from one state to the next, there are 4 basic guidelines to any malpractice case:

  • proof of a doctor-patient relationship;
  • proof of a breach of duty of reasonable care;
  • harm inflicted, emotionally or physically, as a result; and
  • proof of a link between negligence and resulting injury.

Without these 4 elements, you will not have a valid medical malpractice claim. If the claim results from psychiatric care received in Ohio, you can file a claim for psychiatric malpractice with a Cleveland medical malpractice attorney.

Finding Examples of Psychiatric Malpractice

It isn’t easy to come up with general examples of malpractice in a psychiatric setting because there are so many situational elements to consider. However, anything that follows the guidelines listed above can be considered for a malpractice claim. While some events are unethical, unfair, or just plain wrong, they may not always meet the criteria for a malpractice claim so it helps to understand what you are getting involved with before you file.

Some examples of psychiatric cases that fall under the malpractice category include:

  • physical injury resulting from psychiatric medication side effects or negligent monitoring by the treating physician;
  • sexual abuse or contact in a clinical psychiatric setting; and
  • negligent monitoring of patient behavior or psychiatric state that results in suicide or self-harm.

Most of the psychiatric claims that people make are related to medication, although sexually based malpractice lawsuits are a close second. When medication is not properly monitored, things can go wrong. Doctors should be keeping tabs on:

  • side effects;
  • dosage and its effects; and
  • medication interactions or mixing of medications.

What Constitutes Psychiatric Malpractice in Ohio

According to the Ohio Revised Code, S.B. 281, medical malpractice claims must be filed within 1 year of the ’cause of action’. This basically means that when a person discovers an injury related to mistreatment by a physician, they must bring action within 1 calendar year from that date. Additionally, malpractice is defined as any proven negligence on behalf of the treating medical professional that results in physical or emotional injury or wrongful death.

Proving psychological or psychiatric negligence is much more difficult when there is no physical injury as a result. It can also be difficult because much of the treatment is verbal, and without recorded statements or evidence it can quickly become a battle of your word against theirs.

Fortunately, you can rely on a Cleveland medical malpractice attorney to help you fight for your psychiatric claim, no matter what the situation might be. As long as you have proof that negligence occurred and resulted in emotional or physical injury or wrongful death, an attorney can help you fight for your rights.

When to Hire a Cleveland Medical Malpractice Attorney

If you have been the victim of any type of psychiatric malpractice, seek legal help. Even if you aren’t sure whether you have a case or you can’t provide all the evidence yourself, an attorney can help. Contact an attorney as soon as you suspect that your claim meets the guidelines listed at the top of this page. In the state of Ohio, you only have a limited time to file a malpractice claim and you need to get on it as soon as possible.