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IL license lawyerPsychologists provide an important service for their patients, who rely on their expertise for therapy and treatment of a wide range of mental and behavioral health issues. Psychologists who breach their patients’ trust may face serious consequences, including the loss of their license. In some cases, they may even face medical malpractice lawsuits.

What Is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice occurs when a healthcare professional breaches his or her duty of care to a patient, resulting in the patient’s injury or harm. For physical healthcare providers, some of the most common forms of malpractice are surgical errors, improper medication or prescriptions, misdiagnosis, and misinterpretation of test results or patient history.

While psychologists may not have a medical degree, they do provide a form of healthcare, and prescribing psychologists are licensed to prescribe medical treatment. Therefore, they may face medical malpractice claims related to improper prescriptions, misdiagnoses, or failure to diagnose a mental health condition. According to the American Psychological Association (APA), some psychologists also face claims of malpractice due to emotional abuse or sexual misconduct with their clients.

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IL license defense lawyerBeing accused of committing medical malpractice is one of the worst things that could happen to a medical professional. It takes years upon years of education, training, residency, and internship to become a physician. The last thing you would want to see is all of that go down the drain because of a patient complaint. In most cases, medical professionals do not have to worry about facing disciplinary action if they are accused of malpractice, but there are situations in which your license could be put into jeopardy if you are found to be responsible for malpractice.

What Is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice occurs when a medical professional causes injury or harm to a patient because of a negligent act. Malpractice can occur during any stage of care, but to be considered malpractice, it must contain the following three elements:

  • The standard of care was violated
  • An injury was caused by the negligent act
  • That injury resulted in significant damages

There must always be these three elements present for a case to be legally considered medical malpractice. Accusing a doctor of malpractice is serious and could harm the doctor’s career and reputation. Because of this, cases that are missing even one of the elements would likely not hold up in court.

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