Medical Malpractice in Thailand

Although Thailand hospitals and medical tour companies promote their high-quality, low-cost treatments with slick brochures and news documentaries on Western television, the reality is that patients are occasionally victims of negligence. Compensation claims in Thailand typically involve proving a healthcare provider deviated from the accepted standard of care.

Societies want doctors to be motivated to engage in best practices and occasionally take calculated risks, but they also don’t want malpractice insurance rates to stifle patient care.

What is Medical Malpractice?

Medical Malpractice in Thailand generally refers to a healthcare professional deviating from the accepted standards of practice in their field, which results in injury or death. This type of claim can fall under both civil and criminal law, depending on the severity.

Whether you are seeking compensation for dental malpractice or a hospital negligence claim, our legal team will fight to get you what you deserve. We understand that these claims are complex and require an expert lawyer to ensure your best interests are represented.

Typically, compensation for a medical malpractice claim will include financial damages for expenses such as current and future medical costs and loss of income. Additionally, intangible losses like pain and suffering are also awarded by Thai courts. However, award amounts tend to be lower than those in some Western nations. This is because the Thai legal system gravitates toward limiting general damage awards to quantifiable losses. Medical negligence claims also typically require expert testimony from qualified medical professionals.

Negligence

In Thailand, medical malpractice is defined as the negligent conduct of a healthcare professional which causes injury to a patient. The negligence may be in the form of a misdiagnosis, surgical errors or medication mistakes. A patient suffering from these acts of negligence can institute a claim in court.

As a country which has become a global hotspot for medical tourism, the number of cases of medical malpractice in Thailand is rising. Medical malpractice claims are expected to increase as well, as many foreign health insurance companies now cover medical procedures performed in Thailand.

In general, medical negligence claims are based on Section 420 of the Civil and Commercial Code which outlines liability for wrongful act. Damages awarded are generally based on actual, quantifiable losses. It is unusual for Thai courts to award damages for intangible losses such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life etc. which are common in Western legal systems.

Damages

As Thailand becomes a major hub for medical tourism, there has been an increase in medical malpractice cases. A doctor’s failure to meet the established levels of standard medical practice can result in injuries or death. Typically, these claims are filed as civil complaints but in some severe cases may be subject to criminal law.

Damages awarded by the court are often based on quantifiable losses including expenses and lost income (present and future). Intangible loss awards, such as pain and suffering are fewer in number than in Western countries.

Generally, victims must file their claim within one year from the date when they became aware of the wrongful act. However, if the case also falls under the sphere of criminal law, then a longer statute of limitations will apply. The legal process can be lengthy, and it’s crucial to work with a qualified Thailand lawyer. An experienced attorney can ensure that all relevant evidence is gathered and submitted to the court.

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