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4 alternative resolution methods for medical malpractice disputes

On Behalf of | Jan 22, 2024 | Medical Malpractice

According to Justpoint.com, the United State’s court system sees an average of 85,000 medical malpractice lawsuits each year. Only a small percentage of these claims go to court, with the majority using alternative ways to resolve disputes.

In the realm of medical malpractice disputes, seeking resolution without the adversarial environment of a courtroom is a viable option. Understanding your options is important for knowing which one to choose.

1. Mediation

Mediation is a structured negotiation process facilitated by a neutral third party. This method encourages open communication between the involved parties, fostering a collaborative environment. A skilled mediator helps guide discussions toward a mutually agreeable resolution, allowing both the healthcare provider and the affected individual to have a say in the outcome.

2. Arbitration

Arbitration involves presenting evidence and arguments to a neutral arbitrator who renders a decision. While this process is more formal than mediation, it remains less adversarial than a court trial. The parties have more control over the proceedings because they get to select the arbitrator and determine the rules of engagement, providing a degree of flexibility not often found in the courtroom.

3. Settlement negotiations

Settlement negotiations offer a chance for the parties to reach a resolution without the involvement of a third party. Both parties engage in direct discussions to explore possible agreements. This approach can lead to a private settlement and the terms can be confidential, avoiding the public nature of a court proceeding.

4. Ombudsman programs

Some healthcare organizations have established ombudsman programs to provide a neutral party to facilitate communication and resolution between patients and healthcare providers. This informal process can help address concerns early on, potentially preventing the escalation of disputes to a legal level.

Exploring alternatives to court trials for medical malpractice disputes allows parties to seek resolution in a more collaborative and controlled manner. These alternatives provide a range of options for resolving conflicts without the need for a courtroom battle.

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