As a patient who suffered injuries at the hands of a medical provider, you may be wondering, “Who can you sue for malpractice?” To identify the liable party or parties, your medical malpractice attorney will investigate your case to identify all factors that may have contributed to your injuries, and the medical professionals who played a role in causing them or allowing the factors to occur.

Parties That Can Be Sued for Medical Malpractice in Illinois

Various parties may be able to be sued for medical malpractice. Medical professionals take a Hippocratic Oath to protect their patients from harm by providing proper medical care. Medical institutions and medical providers are expected to uphold this oath to avoid substandard care that causes patient injuries and medical malpractice lawsuits. When they provide substandard care, they can be held liable for the harm they cause.

Doctors and Surgeons

Doctors and surgeons who fail to provide the standard of care expected of them can be sued for malpractice. Perhaps the most serious of these lawsuits involve “never events” that cause significant, or deadly harm.

What is a never event in medical malpractice? Egregious errors, like operating on the wrong patient or the wrong body part, are called “never events” because they should never happen.

Nurses and Other Healthcare Professionals

Nurses and other healthcare providers can be held liable for damages if their negligence causes injuries to patients. This is true whether these professionals are employees or independent contractors.

Hospitals and Medical Facilities

Under the legal doctrine of vicarious liability, hospitals are responsible for the actions of their employees like doctors, nurses, and lab technicians, if they are acting within the scope of their regular duties. Additionally, hospitals, clinics, and urgent care centers have a responsibility to operate safe, clean facilities to protect patients. If negligent actions expose patients to pathogens, diseases, or known behavioral problems of staff members (alcohol or substance abuse), patients can file medical malpractice claims.

Are There Other Entities That Can Be Sued for Medical Malpractice?

Others that may be sued for malpractice include:

Pharmaceutical Companies

If pharmaceutical companies or manufacturers fail to warn consumers of a drug’s dangers or side effects, they may be liable in medical malpractice cases.

Medical Device Manufacturers

In some medical malpractice cases, medical device manufacturers are the only party responsible for patient injuries. Courts can hold them liable if they sold a defective medical product and failed to warn patients and their doctors of the risks.

Steps to Take if You Suspect Medical Malpractice

The steps to take if you suspect medical malpractice include:

Consult a Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Proving causation in medical malpractice is essential, so you need experienced Illinois medical malpractice attorneys who know what the court requires. To prove causation, your lawyer must prove:

  • Failure to provide a proper standard of care
  • Breach of medical duty
  • Breach of duty caused patient harm
  • Patient harm resulted in damages