Why expert testimony is needed for medical malpractice cases
Expert testimony is needed for medical malpractice cases because the standard of care is a professional standard, and a layperson would not have knowledge of the accepted professional standard of care. Expert testimony can provide insight into the standard of care and how it was breached, helping to establish liability for the defendant. In addition, expert testimony can provide clarification for complex medical issues, making it easier for the jury to understand the complexities of the case. The Tennessee legislature requires the injured patient in a healthcare liability case to present expert testimony to prove the standard of care and the breach of that standard, as well as the causation between the breach and the injury or death. The Tennessee Supreme Court has held that the expert testimony must be from a qualified expert in the relevant field. A board-certified medical malpractice attorney has a list of medical experts who will review claims and testify in court.