The 4 Ds of Medical Malpractice

Of itself, “medical negligence”, synonymously used with “medical malpractice”, is defined as: an act or omission by a medical professional or healthcare worker that deviates from the accepted medical standard of care.

While this may be a probable cause of which to establish a medical malpractice case, negligence alone is not enough to form a valid claim, and certainly not enough to win a claim.

In a court of law, it must be proven that the direct negligence of the defendant (medical professional) caused direct harm to the plaintiff (patient). To achieve this, there are four requirements that a medical malpractice case must meet in order for a victim to receive full compensation, commonly referred to as the four Ds.

The Four Ds: Defined

Understanding the four Ds, what each entails, and how they can affect the outcome of your case is imperative. The team of Albuquerque medical malpractice attorneys at Carter & Valle Law Firm will guide you in constructing, presenting, and executing a successful claim that undoubtedly meets the criteria of the four Ds:

     1. Duty – A Provider’s Duty of Care

A patient must prove that a patient-provider relationship existed and that the provider owed them a duty of care. This can easily be established through medical records or receipts that clearly show that the provider was overseeing the victim’s treatment. 

     2. Deviation – A Provider Deviated From the Standard of Expected Care

All medical professionals and healthcare workers are held to certain standards of care within their industry, and if they deviate from these set standards, they may be found liable for medical malpractice. The victim must prove that the medical professional or healthcare worker failed to comply with such standards.

     3. Damages – Their Deviation Resulted in Damages

Using indisputable evidence, a victim must prove that the provider’s deviation from the accepted medical standards of care caused damages. These damages may include, but are not limited to, physical damages, emotional damages, mental damages, and financial damages.

     4. Direct Cause – The Deviation Directly Caused Damages

The victim must prove that the deviation of the provider from their industry-set medical standards was the direct cause of their damages.

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A study by John Hopkins University found that medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the US, following heart disease and cancer. However, many patients are unaware that they are victims until it’s too late to file a claim or they’ve passed on.

You’ve suffered enough—don’t be a victim of medical malpractice any longer! Call (505) 888-4357 and trust Albuquerque’s most experienced attorneys to fight for you!