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What You Need to Know About Surgical Never Events in Medical Malpractice Cases

Published on Oct 30, 2017 at 5:36 pm in Medical Malpractice.

When it comes to medical malpractice cases, injured patients have the burden of proving how a medical professional’s negligence more likely than not led to their preventable injuries. While medical negligence can take numerous forms, it is generally defined by law as a health care provider’s failure to administer treatment in accordance to accepted medical standards – which means that any reasonable and skillful medical professional under the same or similar circumstances would have acted differently to avoid harm.

As this legal definition makes clear, what constitutes medical negligence can sometimes be a matter open to argument. Were there medically acceptable reasons why a doctor failed to make a diagnosis of a patient’s condition? Could a doctor reasonably have foreseen complications experienced by a specific patient? The answers to these questions can vary from case to case, which is why it is often difficult for injured patients to understand when their medical professional’s care amounted to negligence, and whether they have a viable medical malpractice claim. However, there are some types of medical errors that always constitute malpractice. These are known as “never events.”

Damage Caps on Medical Malpractice: Why It’s Dangerous

Published on Sep 1, 2017 at 5:53 pm in Medical Malpractice.

In a continuing trend of naming bills misleadingly, the Protecting Access to Care Act (HR 1215) was passed in the Republican-majority Congress on June 28, 2017. This bill places a cap on the maximum amount a patient can sue for damages in a medical malpractice suit. HR 1215 is currently being considered by the Senate, so it has not yet gone into effect.

However, this is a bill Republicans favor. If the Senate goes the same way as Congress, those who are victims of severe negligence will only be able to sue for up to $250,000 in noneconomic damages, despite any additional care needed to deal with the repercussions.

Proponents of the bill argue it will save the health care industry thousands of dollars, making health care affordable for more people, but this assertion is dubious. Even if medical insurers do save millions of dollars, this is no guarantee they will lower their premiums to allow better health care for low-income individuals who can’t afford it. Likewise, this bill targets the victims of malpractice who have suffered the most. Those who require extensive amounts of health care, rehabilitation, and who can no longer work after their injuries will need much more than $250,000 to survive.

In one example, written about by F. Paul Bland Jr. in on The Hill website, Kathleen Astleford is one such victim. In 2018, she was diagnosed with cancer in the right tonsil. She was referred to a Dr. Turrisi, who incorrectly noted she had been diagnosed with cancer on the left side of her tonsil, rather than the right. He then recommended she undergo 35 radiation therapy treatments, after which she would be cancer free.

Medication Error Leads to Death & 7-Figure Settlement

Published on Aug 3, 2017 at 6:12 pm in Medical Malpractice.

With more than 80 years of combined experience, Shrager & Sachs has guided hundreds of clients to successful outcomes. We take each case seriously and work hard to provide effective solutions to meet clients’ specific needs. Our team is proud to share the story of how we helped our client obtain a settlement for the wrongful death of his father.

The Situation

Our client’s father had been living independently in a senior living home for several months. However, he started becoming confused and unable to maintain his independent situation. It was recommended that he undergo a brief hospital stay, where he would try a combination of medication in the hopes of decreasing his confusion.

Once he was admitted to the psychiatric unit of a neighborhood hospital, the senior living facility sent over a list of his prescriptions, including Methotrexate, which he was taking as a maintenance drug for his rheumatoid arthritis. However, the list had a transcription error. Instead of recording a dosage of 2.5 mgs for 3 administrations given once a week, the list reported a dosage of 2.5 mgs given twice a day, on a daily basis.

Common Causes of Wrongful Death During Pregnancy

Published on Jul 19, 2017 at 6:14 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Physicians owe a duty of care to patients to provide safe, responsible medical treatment. If your loved one died during pregnancy, our Philadelphia medical malpractice attorneys can investigate the situation and provide compassionate representation. There are many causes of wrongful death during pregnancy, labor, and delivery. These could often be prevented with adequate diagnosis and prompt treatment. Unfortunately, doctors sometimes fail to act, or make hasty, reckless judgments regarding a patient’s care, resulting in wrongful death.

There Are 2 Main Causes of Wrongful Death During Pregnancy:

1. A Physician’s Negligence

If a doctor fails to diagnose and treat a mother’s medical condition before, during, or after pregnancy, this may lead to wrongful death. There are many dangerous diseases and medical conditions that can threaten the life of a mother and child. Physicians must use their training to identify the issue and provide effective treatment to protect the life of the patient. If they do not, they may be held liable in a wrongful death or medical malpractice lawsuit.

Medical Errors on the Rise in VA Hospitals

Published on Jun 19, 2017 at 6:24 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Hospitals throughout the U.S., including VA facilities, are facing pressure to reduce the number of preventable medical errors that have led to a growing number of patient injuries or deaths. The trouble is that while there is a seven percent increase in medical errors reported at VA hospitals, there has been an eighteen percent dip in investigations as to why they occurred. As malpractice payouts to veterans have reached a 12-year high, a pattern of preventable deaths and low accountability has, unfortunately, become evident.

Although the VA has emerged as a fairly frequent offender, the truth is that medical malpractice can occur anywhere, and more often than doctors would care to admit. If you have suffered injury due to the carelessness of your doctor, you may have questions about what your options are.

The Importance of Informed Patient Consent

Published on May 11, 2017 at 6:35 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Informed consent is a crucial aspect of medical treatment. As a patient, you have the right to a conversation with your doctor regarding any treatments or medications you are beginning. You doctor should talk to you about the procedure, side effects, what you can expect afterwards, how to take medications, or any other information related to your treatment. They should also answer any questions you may have.

Informed consent is important, but why? Informed consent is one step of many that ensure the safety of patients. Opening a dialogue with the health care provider allows patients to ask questions to increase their own understanding, and to potentially prevent errors. Your contributions to this conversation let your doctor make decisions that are better for you.

Medical Culture May Encourage Doctors to Not Admit Their Mistakes

Published on Apr 13, 2017 at 6:36 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Although medical science has allowed us to live longer and healthier lives, it is not without risks. Nearly all types of medical procedures and treatments pose risks to patients. While some risks are unavoidable, many can be effectively managed in order to ensure positive outcomes. Unfortunately, when medical professionals commit errors, deviate from the recognized standard of care, or otherwise fail in their duty of taking reasonable measures to reduce risks, patients can suffer preventable harm.

Medical mistakes on the part of physicians, nurses, and other health care providers injure and kill hundreds of thousands of patients each year in the United States. In fact, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reports that medical negligence ranks just behind heart disease and cancer as the third leading cause of death nationwide. With medical errors as common as they are, one would think that medical providers would be honest and upfront when mistakes occur. According to a recent study, however, most health care professionals would actually work to conceal their role in a medical mistake.

Filing a Lawsuit for Misdiagnosis: The Basics

Published on Apr 6, 2017 at 6:38 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Medical professionals have a legal duty to treat patients in accordance to a recognized “standard of care.” When they deviate from this standard, such as when they fail to properly diagnose a condition that should have reasonably been identified, they can be held accountable for their negligence and liable for harm and damages patients suffer as a result.

At Shrager & Sachs, our Philadelphia medical malpractice lawyers have recovered millions of dollars in compensation on behalf of patients who were injured at the hands of a physicians, nurses, and other health care professionals. These include patients who suffered preventable harm as the result of a misdiagnosis for a condition that should and could have been correctly detected.

Settlement vs. Lawsuit: Which One is Right for Your Case?

Published on Feb 24, 2017 at 6:46 pm in Medical Malpractice.

If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident that could and should have been preventable if not for the negligence of another, you have the right to pursue a recovery of your damages by filing a personal injury claim. Personal injury cases enable you to hold the party who caused your accident and injuries liable for any damages that resulted from the incident, which commonly includes medical bills, lost work wages, and pain and suffering, among others.

While all personal injury claims are hinged on proving that the at-fault party in an accident was negligent, and that their negligence “more likely than not” caused a victim to suffer injuries, how it is resolved will vary from case to case. When resolved successfully, a personal injury case may conclude with a settlement or a verdict following the filing of a lawsuit.

Common Preventable Medical Errors

Published on Feb 3, 2017 at 7:26 pm in Medical Malpractice.

When people go to the hospital for medical treatment or surgery, they expect that the medical professionals responsible for their care will do the best job possible. The last thing on your mind is suffering further injury.

According to U.S. News, more than 200,000 people die from preventable medical errors each year, and up to 20 times more likely to suffer from errors that severely injure them. A new study suggests that medical errors in hospitals and other healthcare facilities are now the third-leading cause of death in the United States every year, which is more than accidents, respiratory disease, stroke, and Alzheimer’s.

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