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What is the basic definition of medical malpractice?

Medical malpractice is a large umbrella term. Because of this, it can encompass a number of different situations and scenarios. This can make it a little difficult for people to pinpoint whether or not something that has happened to them or a loved one may be considered medical malpractice.

The basic definition of medical malpractice is an injury that has come about either because of direct malicious intent on the part of the medical staff, or because of negligence. The extent of the injury does not determine whether or not it can be categorized as medical malpractice. Even a small injury could be classified as that if it was intentionally caused by staff or the result of negligence.

Any member of medical staff can be the cause of medical malpractice as well. The U.S. National Library of Medicine states that and goes on to define that different categories of medical malpractice are handled in different ways. Negligent harm is handled differently than surgical error or medication mix-ups, for example. Likewise, injuries that occur at a walk-in clinic can differ from injuries incurred at a primary care physician or the emergency room. Because of the distinction of these categories, it is sometimes easier for patients to narrow down which category their injury might fall under.

Some possible categories of medical malpractice can include birth injuries, hospital error, nursing home negligence, walk-in clinic or primary care physician malpractice, or misdiagnosis. There are smaller branches of categories that specific injuries fall under, but these are the largest umbrella categories. Intentional injury is obviously taken more severely, but it is possible for a person to get compensation for their injuries even if it was an accident born from negligence.

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