The Strong Representation Your Case Deserves

Addressing medical gaslighting in Idaho

On Behalf of | Jan 17, 2023 | Medical Malpractice

When you don’t feel well, the person with the knowledge and experience to help you is your doctor. However, sometimes doctors make you feel like your concerns are invalid or exaggerated. This practice is called medical gaslighting, a form of malpractice in Idaho.

Understanding medical gaslighting

Medical gaslighting can take many forms, but it generally involves a physician disregarding a patient’s concerns or not taking their symptoms seriously. For example, this might include a doctor attributing serious physical symptoms to stress instead of offering a proper diagnosis. It also includes brushing off a patient’s worries by suggesting that the issue is “all in their head” and that there is no medical basis for their distress.

Consequences of medical gaslighting

This type of communication can make the patient feel unheard, frustrated and often embarrassed, making it difficult for them to get proper medical treatment. Medical gaslighting can also lead to a delay in diagnosis and have serious long-term consequences on the patient’s health. Furthermore, this behavior puts the doctor’s reputation at risk, as it violates ethical standards in the medical community.

Medical malpractice in Idaho

Medical gaslighting is a form of medical malpractice, as it violates both patient autonomy and trust between doctor and patient. If you believe your physician has engaged in this act, you can file a complaint with the Idaho State Board of Medicine.

You will need to satisfy four elements when filing this claim: duty, breach of duty, causation and damages. Duty means the doctor has a responsibility to provide care. This automatically occurs when you establish a doctor-patient relationship. To prove a breach of duty, you must demonstrate that the doctor’s actions deviated from accepted medical practices and caused harm to the patient. For example, the doctor might have disregarded a patient’s complaints and not taken them seriously, leading to an incorrect diagnosis or prolonged symptoms. Causation requires that the medical malpractice was the direct cause of harm, and damages mean that you must have suffered a distinct injury due to the other three elements.

Medical gaslighting is unethical, cruel and dangerous. It’s important to understand malpractice laws in Idaho and your rights as a patient to identify, prevent or even fight this type of medical misconduct.