The Obstacles to Getting Justice after a Medical Error

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Posted by Tim Semelroth

What It Takes To Make a Successful Medical Malpractice Case in Iowa

Iowa law makes it difficult to bring a medical malpractice case.  Judges will not allow you to go forward with a medical malpractice lawsuit unless you can present testimony from a qualified medical expert who says the injured patient’s doctor committed a preventable medical error.   Most experienced Iowa medical malpractice attorneys do not even file a malpractice case unless they already have a report from a qualified expert.

This testimony is usually very difficult to get. It is easy to understand why.

  • First, you need to find a medical expert qualified to review the treatment that the injured patient received.
  • Second, out of that pool of qualified experts, you have to find one who is willing to take time out of his or her busy practice to analyze and ultimately criticize the work of someone else in that pool.
  • Third, out of the experts who are both qualified and willing to analyze and criticize, you need to find one who is brave enough to make his or her criticisms public by making them in writing and under oath.

As you can probably imagine, this is a difficult person to find – particularly in a state as small as Iowa. Many Iowa doctors know each other, went to the same schools together and belong to the same medical organizations. For those reasons, Iowa doctors are rarely willing to testify as experts in medical malpractice cases against other Iowa doctors.  That means most testifying experts come from outside the state.

Finding a qualified expert to testify on behalf of an injured patient is often the most challenging part of making a successful medical malpractice case. It helps to have connections with medical experts around the country.  It also takes the research ability to find the right answers in medical literature and the expertise to ask the right questions.  The truth is that most lawyers are not equipped to represent someone in a medical malpractice case. That is why finding the necessary expert testimony for your case often starts by finding the right medical malpractice attorney.

To find out the information you need to find the right Iowa medical malpractice attorney for your case, use the form on this page to download the entire Law Guide to Iowa Medical Malpractice Claims.

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