Have you suffered from a medication error reaction?
If you or a loved one has a complication due to a medication error, our team can help you understand your legal options to achieve the best possible outcome
Why Maurice Blackburn?
We are Australia's leading medical negligence law firm and have a team of dedicated professionals who only handle medical malpractice claims. This team has successfully represented hundreds of patients and their families in complex and sensitive cases.
If you think you have experienced medical malpractice, talk to us today to find out how we can help you.
All you need to know about medical negligence
If your health care professional, hospital or other facility breaches what’s known as their duty of care, you may be able to make a claim for compensation.
Types of medical negligence
Dimitra DubrowNational Head of Medical Negligence, Melbourne
"I enjoy interacting closely with my clients and helping them to access their full entitlements. It is truly rewarding knowing that we are helping empower people."
Tom BallantynePrincipal Lawyer, Melbourne
"I’m inspired by helping people achieve a measure of justice and financial stability."
Frequently Asked Questions
You may be eligible to claim medical negligence compensation if you have an adverse reaction or other complication from medication as a result of negligent treatment from your medical provider.
Medication errors can happen with prescribed medicines and drugs associated with surgery and emergency medicine treatment. A provider can include a hospital, doctor, nurse, assistant, lab personnel, dentist, pharmacist or other employer or allied health professional.
The most common types of Complications involving drugs or drug treatment can involve:
- an overdose due to a doctor or pharmacist's mistake
- birth defects from medicine given to mothers during pregnancy
- toxic drug interactions (during antibiotic treatment and chemotherapy, for example)
- issues from cholesterol-lowering drugs
- aminophylline overdose
- issues from improperly monitoring drugs used to treat chronic conditions such as asthma, hypertension and psychiatric illness
- anaesthesia issues
- a stroke caused by experimental drugs used to treat a heart attack
- hearing loss from Gentamicin toxicity.
Medical providers owe you a 'duty of care' to exercise skill, judgement and reasonable care when examining, diagnosing, treating and advising you. If they breach that duty, you may be able to make a medical negligence compensation claim and they may be liable for any harm caused.
Common negligent treatment that you may be able to claim medical negligence compensation for include:
- making an existing condition worse
- misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose a condition
- failure to provide the appropriate treatment or referral
- a delay in diagnosis or providing the appropriate treatment or referral
- failure to perform surgery or provide post-operative care with reasonable care and skill
- incorrectly reporting on test results.
You may be able to claim medical negligence compensation for medication errors by a medical provider under general Australian law. This also applies if medical negligence or malpractice results in an unexpected death.
The law in some states has a threshold that determines how significant or severe an injury has to be before you’re entitled to claim damages for pain and suffering caused by this injury. Each state and territory has its own laws that apply to medical negligence cases.
To make a successful medical negligence claim, you need to be able to prove that:
- there was negligent medical treatment
- the treatment caused an injury or some harm that would not otherwise have occurred
If you do have a case, we will help settle it outside of court or represent you in court. Contact us to discuss your claim.
You will only need to pay our fees if you receive a settlement for your medical negligence compensation claim for medication errors, as we provide our medical negligence services on a 'no win, no fee'* basis.
If your claim is successful, you will be charged for the costs of the investigation and the legal work performed after issuing proceedings. This will be a charge on the appropriate court scale, and you will be given more information about this at the time when the decision is made to issue proceedings.
You won't be charged our fees if your claim is not pursued. In most cases, disbursements (the out-of-pocket expenses that we pay to other people) must be paid whether you win or lose.
Yes. However, medical negligence law is complicated. Even if you have received negligent treatment, you cannot make a medical malpractice claim if you haven't suffered harm or injury.
As medicine is a difficult practice, your medical providers aren't expected to be perfect. Sometimes medical treatment is unsuccessful and injuries occur, but that is not enough to show that you were treated with negligence. You will need to prove that your negligent treatment is more than a reasonable mishap or mistake.
It's important to get help from someone who understands the complexities of medical negligence law, with experience in your area. Maurice Blackburn is Australia's leading and largest team of medical negligence lawyers, with all the resources and experience that come with being a national firm.
If you think you’ve experienced negligence or malpractice, contact us today to find out how we can help you.
In order to make a medical negligence claim for medication errors, you will need to:
- Contact Maurice Blackburn to speak with our medical negligence team.
- We will gather information from you about what has occurred and then provide you with a preliminary assessment.
We will help you understand if you have grounds for a claim by investigating your case and getting an independent medical expert's opinion. If we believe you should proceed further, we will then lodge your legal claim and represent you at mediation and settlement hearings.
If your case doesn’t settle, we can represent you in court. We also manage coroner's inquests by liaising with the court on your behalf, preparing the case and representing you in court. Contact us today.
Time limits vary under the different state and federal laws. In most cases, you need to take legal action within three years of the injury. If your medical negligence claim is for a child, time limits can vary more and differ between states.
The timeline for your medical negligence claim for medication errors may be shorter or longer depending on the case, so it's best to contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Extensions of time limits are sometimes possible.
Your medical negligence claim for medication errors and the legal process may take up to several years, especially if you have to wait for injuries to stabilise.