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What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical malpractice involves more than a patient with a bad result. It is the plaintiff’s burden to prove that the injury resulted from medical practices which fell below the prevailing professional standard of care. An "action for medical malpractice" is a claim in tort or in contract for damages because of the death, injury, or monetary loss to any person arising out of any medical, dental, or surgical diagnosis, treatment, or care by any provider of health care. Health care providers include licensed physicians, osteopaths, podiatrists, optometrists, dentists, chiropractors, pharmacists, or hospitals or ambulatory surgical centers.

This research guide will focus entirely on medical malpractice of Paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians (E.M.T).  Paramedics may be the subject of medical malpractice suits due to a failure to act appropriately, such as if they do not diagnose an obvious medical condition or if they do not see life threatening signs that later lead to death or severe injury. Paramedics may also become the subject of medical malpractice suits if they do not follow the standard emergency protocols they are expected to adhere to in a given situation. Such a job necessarily requires people who can make quick decisions and act upon them, but some of these decisions, when incorrect, can lead to the injury or death of the very person the paramedic was charged with saving.


Certifications for Paramedic/EMT

§ 401.2701. Emergency medical services training programs.

2) The department shall establish by rule educational and training criteria and examinations for the certification and recertification of emergency medical technicians and paramedics. Such rules must require, but need not be limited to:

(a) For emergency medical technicians, proficiency in techniques identified in s. 401.23(7) and in rules of the department.

(b) For paramedics, proficiency in techniques identified in s. 401.23(1) and in rules of the department.


Emergency Medical Technician Basic Training course Curriculum of the Unites States

Paramedic National Standard Curricula

Definition of Malpractice

Blacks Law Dictionary "Malpractice" (Bryan A. Garner 10 ed.)- An instance of negligence or incompetence on the part of a professional. To succeed in a malpractice claim, a plaintiff must also prove proximate cause and damages. Medical malpractice(1834) A doctor’s failure to exercise the degree of care and skill that a physician or surgeon of the same medical specialty would use under similar circumstances.

Standard of Care

Paramedic Liability is based of negligence. Negligence of a health care provider is the failure to use reasonable care. Reasonable care on the part of a health care provider is that level of care, skill, and treatment which, in light of all relevant surrounding circumstances, is recognized as acceptable and appropriate by similar and reasonably careful health care providers.

To prevail in a medical malpractice case, a plaintiff must establish: (1) the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care; (2) the defendant breached that duty of care; and (3) that the breach of care proximately caused the injuries the plaintiff claims and that damages are owed





The following information contained in this research guide is informational and not intended to be used or treated as legal advice or guidance.  This legal research guide is an academic exercise and in no way can or will substitute for the counsel and direction of a licensed probate attorney familiar with the probate law of Florida.

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