There could possibly be more than one doctor at fault. If so they would be considered joint tortfeasors and each held responsible for a percentage of the harm caused. Peter Hart
The potential at fault parties would not even necessarily be limited to doctors. Professionals who ran or interpreted tests could be responsible as well. But don't rush to conclusions that you have a case simply because there may have been a misdiagnosis. The misdiagnosis must stem from what is called a breach of the standard of care. Further, the misdiagnosis itself must result in some actual harm to you (apart from the underlying condition). Good luck.
The author of this post is licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia. This post is intended as general information only, and is not provided as legal advice in connection with any specific case, and does not create an attorney-client relationship.
Generally, each doctor is responsible for his or her own medical errors. It is not uncommon to see multiple health care providers involved in medical malpractice cases. Many times a physician will assume that the doctor who treated the patient before him did everything that he was supposed to do. In medical malpractice cases, the best stragegy is to focus the case on the physician or health care provider who is most responsible for the injuries and damages suffered by the patient. There are many issues involved when multiple defendants are joined. In most states, the doctrine of comparative fault is utilized which means that the jury is allowed to determine the exact percentage of fault of each doctor on the jury verdict form. Some states even allow the defense to argue the fault of doctors or health care providers that were not even sued by the patient. If the jury finds that these unsued doctors were at fault, it can lessen or nullify the judgment in favor of the plaintiff.
If you will go to such websites as www.npsf.org or www.ahrq.org you can find lots of literature that says that when a patient suffers a preventable malpractice injury there is almost always a number of different people and a number of different processes that failed. So, it is very common for more than one doctor to be negligent in a malpractice lawsuit. You will need to get in touch with a competent board certified attorney who can investigate and identify all the failures in the system that resulted in the injury. Obviously, what happened in your situation will be unique to your circumstances and will require consultation of qualified experts to answer many of the questions you have. Please keep in mind there is a time deadline to filing suit, so you would be well advised to contact a local attorney immediately in order to preserve your rights. Good luck to you and your family.
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