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CHICAGO Medical Malpractice ATTORNEYS

Almost 800,000 Americans suffer permanent disability or lose their lives due to medical malpractice every year. In Illinois, approximately 400 medical malpractice claims are made every year, amounting to millions of dollars. According to the American Medical Association, one in three physicians face medical malpractice lawsuits by the time they are 55 years old. Sadly, when doctors and hospitals are negligent, they do not come forward willingly. It is up to brave patients, with the help of their attorneys, to hold healthcare professionals accountable for medical malpractice. 

If you have been hurt by medical negligence, you may be able to file a claim for compensation. Our Chicago medical malpractice attorneys can help you through the process and ensure you receive the full and fair settlement you are entitled to. 

Common Types of Birth Injuries 

Sadly, birth injuries are one of the most common types of medical malpractice. Birth injuries happen in the labor and delivery room and they cause real harm to newborn babies and their mothers. Some of the most common types of birth injuries include: 

  • Brachial palsy: Brachial palsy affects the group of nerves that affect the hands and arms. If these nerves are torn, the damage may be permanent. If the injury only results in bruising and swelling, infants should regain movement within a few months. 
  • Forced and vacuum injuries: Doctors sometimes have to use forceps and vacuum to guide babies through the birth canal and deliver them. Improper use of these tools can result in bruising of the scalp and face, and can even crush and break bones. 
  • Cephalohematoma: This injury involves bleeding between the skull and its fibrous covering. The bleeding often appears hours after a birth and shows as a raised bump on the child’s head. Depending on the size of these hematomas, they can take between two weeks and three months to disappear. A cephalohematoma can also result in jaundice. 
  • Facial paralysis: A newborn’s face can be placed under great pressure during the birthing process. This can result in injury to the facial nerve. If the nerve is torn, surgery may be necessary. 
  • Broken bones: When a baby is large or breech, their shoulders can become stuck in the birthing canal. As the child is moved through the canal, certain bones may break, with the collarbone being the most common. 
  • Cerebral palsy: Cerebral palsy is a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain posture and balance. The birthing process can cause cerebral palsy if the child does not receive enough oxygen. There is currently no cure for cerebral palsy, meaning a child will live with it for their entire life. 

Other Types of Medical Malpractice Claims 

While birth injuries are very common types of medical malpractice, there are others, as well. These include: 

  • Misdiagnosis 
  • Delayed diagnosis 
  • Medication errors 
  • Surgical errors 
  • Failure to treat 
  • Anesthesia errors 
  • Failure to monitor 
  • Emergency room errors 
  • Failure to obtain consent 

If you or someone you love has been injured by medical malpractice, our team of attorneys can help you claim the compensation you deserve. 

Injuries Sustained in Medical Malpractice Accidents 

Injuries in medical malpractice range widely, as the severity will depend on the exact cause of the damage. Some of the most common injuries sustained in medical malpractice accidents are as follows: 

  • Infections: Infections are usually caused by sanitation and contamination issues in hospitals. If untreated, infections can also result in other injuries, as shown by the case in which our attorneys help obtain a $2,100,000 verdict for a patient who suffered a leg injury due to a failure to diagnose and treat infection. 
  • Incisions: When patients are operated on unnecessarily, or the wrong patient is operated on, they incur unnecessary pain and recovery time. 
  • Overdose: Medication errors can cause a patient to suffer an overdose. This is usually due to a lack of communication between medical staff. 
  • Wrongful death: Medical malpractice is sometimes so severe that patients do not survive the accident. In these cases, family members can file a wrongful death claim. 

Common Causes of Medical Malpractice Accidents 

Medical malpractice has many different causes. The most common of these include: 

  • Poor judgment: Most medical malpractice occurs due to poor judgment. Inadequate history-taking, failing to perform adequate physical exams, failure to monitor patients, and premature discharge are just a few examples of when poor judgment results in medical malpractice. 
  • Lack of communication: Good communication is critical in any medical setting. For example, in labor and delivery rooms, healthcare professionals must communicate with each other about the infant’s vital signs, the condition of the mother, and more. When medical staff cannot properly communicate with each other, it can have catastrophic results. 
  • Inexperienced healthcare professionals: Inexperienced healthcare professionals should never be left to practice on their own. Proper supervision should always be a priority until healthcare professionals have a sufficient amount of experience with diagnoses, performing procedures, and communicating with patients. 

How are Medical Malpractice Claims Different from Other Personal Injury Cases? 

While medical malpractice is an area of personal injury law, these claims are much different from other lawsuits. One of the main differences is that juries often have to be educated about medical matters. A jury may easily understand how a car accident caused serious injuries, for example, but may not understand the serious repercussions of a missed diagnosis. Due to this, it is critical to work with a lawyer who has medical knowledge, and who works with a network of medical professionals. 

The damages in medical malpractice cases are also often much higher, due to the fact that the injuries are more severe. This means that insurance companies are more likely to aggressively fight these claims. However, Illinois does not place a cap on the damages available in medical malpractice cases, unlike in other states. 

Lastly, the laws governing medical malpractice lawsuits are also different. For example, anyone filing a medical malpractice claim must also submit an affidavit stating that a healthcare professional has reviewed the facts of the case and believes that there is merit to the case. 

How Do Hospitals Defend Medical Malpractice Cases? 

Hospitals and healthcare professionals use insurance companies and attorneys that aggressively defend malpractice lawsuits. 

Additionally, hospitals often state that they are not liable because a doctor was not an employee but rather, an independent contractor. While this is often the case, if the patient reasonably assumed that a doctor was an employee and relied on this in seeking treatment, the hospital could still be held liable for malpractice under an apparent agency theory. 

Our Medical Malpractice Attorneys in Chicago Can Help You Claim Full Damages 

If you have been hurt by medical malpractice, our experienced Chicago medical malpractice attorneys can help. At Kennedy Watkins, we are dedicated to helping injured patients. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and will travel across the state to meet with clients. We also work on a contingency basis so you do not pay for our legal help unless we win your case. Call us now at (312) 448-8181 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation and to get the information you need. 


About Medical Malpractice Claims in Illinois


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Kennedy and Watkins were referred to myself and my husband by another attorney. From the very first conversation we knew we made the right choice. Everything was always communicated from the beginning to the end which made the process smooth and in the end we were extremely satisfied with the results of our case.

– Trena L. Wallace

Highly recommended! Jack was very attentive to my case after my accident and walked me through each step along the way clear and concise. My case was settled in a timely manner overall I was very pleased.

– Shelby Furcron

I’d want to mention that working with Mr. Kennedy was a pleasure because he was a huge help and support in my case. He was good at communicating and made sure that everything was crystal clear. He also had a great deal of empathy for the circumstances. I would recommend him to anyone who needs legal advice.

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