The Different Parties That Can Be Held Liable for Medical Malpractice

The Different Parties That Can Be Held Liable for Medical Malpractice

Nov 11, 2022, 4:49:18 PM Life and Styles

Suing physicians for misconduct or negligence may be the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the term "medical malpractice." However, other healthcare providers and stakeholders besides doctors can also be held accountable for harming a patient. Do not hesitate to contact a skilled medical malpractice lawyer if you suspect that you have been the victim of negligence by any healthcare professional. It is not hard to identify good lawyers nowadays, thanks to the internet. You can visit law websites such as to know how good they are.

Individual Healthcare Practitioners: Doctors, Nurses, and Other Health Care Professionals

Other healthcare providers besides physicians and surgeons, such as dentists, plastic surgeons, psychiatrists, nurses, oncologists, nurse practitioners, neurologists, chiropractors, and alternative medicine providers, may also be held accountable for medical negligence. Similar to a case against a doctor, the plaintiff must demonstrate that the defendant owed the patient a duty, that duty was breached by deviating from the accepted standard of care, that the provider's breach resulted in harm to the patient, and that the patient was injured for the case to be successful.


Hospitals may be found "vicariously" liable for the carelessness of their workers as well as directly liable for their wrongdoing in the context of medical malpractice lawsuits. Vicarious liabilities mean that a party may be held liable for another's carelessness rather than its own. A hospital must undertake reasonable background checks and inquiries regarding candidates' education, training, and licenses before recruiting them for its medical team. Under the "corporate negligence" doctrine, a hospital that neglects to do a reasonable background check on a member of its medical staff may be held accountable for negligence if the staff member's careless handling of a patient causes harm. When a hospital, for example, neglects to check the qualifications of an attending physician before awarding him or her privileges there, or when it permits a physician it knew or should have known was incapable of treating patients, then in such cases, the hospital can be held accountable or responsible for negligence.

Vicarious Liability

According to the legal doctrine of "respondeat superior," an employer may be held accountable for its employees' negligent acts if the employee acted in the course of employment when the careless act or oversight occurred. Suppose a hospital employee's malpractice results in patient injury; the hospital itself may be held vicariously liable. The importance of this doctrine to complainants in medical negligence claims stems from its ability to guarantee that a party would be willing and able to pay for an injured plaintiff's damages.


The issue of whether health maintenance organizations (HMOs) can be held accountable for the malpractice of a member physician has been examined by several courts. In essence, lawsuits for medical negligence brought against HMOs follow the same legal arguments as those brought against hospitals. The first claim is direct negligence, according to which the HMO is responsible for its doctors' improper selection, management, or retention. The second claim is based on respondeat superior or vicarious liability. It is crucial to remember that many malpractice lawsuits brought against HMOs may be preempted by state or federal legislation. These pre-emption clauses shield HMOs chartered under state law from significant jury awards.

Published by Tracey Maggio

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