In any medical malpractice claim, plaintiffs’ attorneys must find the facts to determine how the injury took place and to identify liable parties. This task becomes much harder when medical professionals are reluctant to pin the blame on one of their own.
The so-called “cone of silence” in regard to medical malpractice claims can manifest in a number of ways:
- Staff members present at the time of the alleged malpractice may be reluctant to provide damning information about one of their colleagues. They may feel that their own careers are on the line.
- Other doctors may be reluctant to report evidence of malpractice in their patients when clear signs of prior medical mistakes are obvious upon examination.
- It may be difficult to find expert witnesses willing to support a plaintiff’s case.
This is not to suggest that the majority of medical professionals are dishonest or intentionally erect walls of silence in the face of medical negligence claims. But natural biases exist in all of us, and can lead a well-meaning person to see an issue one way when an objective review of the facts tells a different story. In some cases, of course, the suppression of information is intentional, as hospitals strive to protect their bottom lines and medical professionals their careers.
Fighting to uncover crucial evidence
The job of a medical malpractice lawyer is to find the facts, no matter what barriers stand in the way. In some cases, investigations do not uncover negligence, but rather point to complications and other circumstances that cannot be blamed on anyone.
In some cases, however, the facts point to medical treatment that falls below a legally accepted standard of care. When such conditions apply, victims deserve justice and compensation for their losses. If you or a loved one has suffered due to medical negligence, consult with an attorney who can help you navigate all of the challenges inherent in such a complex legal issue.