When Are Anesthesia Errors Considered Medical Malpractice?

When Are Anesthesia Errors Considered Medical Malpractice?

By | Medical Malpractice, Medication Errors | No Comments

It’s estimated that there are well over 50 million surgeries performed in the U.S. each year. With a number like that, it’s extremely fortunate that medical technology has made anesthesia better and safer than it ever has been. However, even with modern technology, mistakes with anesthesia happen – and when they do, the results can be devastating, even permanent injury or death.

When an injury results from an anesthesia error, you may be entitled to compensation via a medical malpractice claim. However, not all medical mistakes are medical malpractice, so it’s important that you consult an attorney to help you determine how to proceed with your case.

In the meantime, it’s important for you to understand what these types of anesthesia mistakes look like and what their effects might be.

Types of Surgical Anesthesia

Anesthesia is used to prevent patients from suffering pain during surgery. Various forms have been used throughout the years. Currently, medicine uses three kinds of anesthesia:

Local anesthesia – This type of anesthesia is used to numb a specific part of the body and is generally used for less invasive procedures, like a mole removal or biopsy.

Regional anesthesia – This type of anesthesia numbs a larger area of the body. An epidural and spinal block are examples of regional anesthetics.

General anesthesia – This type of anesthesia causes the patient to be completely unconscious, so they are unable to feel pain.

Specially trained medical professionals administer anesthesia and monitor the patient during surgery. Mistakes can be made by anesthesiologists, but also by doctors, nurses, or any other medical staff member who is part of the medical team caring for the patient. When there is a breakdown in communication between these team members, or when a member is negligent in some way, errors can occur with serious consequences.

Types of Anesthesia Mistakes

You may think that anesthesia errors only occur during surgery, however, they can actually happen before, during, or after an operation or procedure.

Anesthesia mistakes that are preoperative include:

Failing to educate the patient about the possible risks of the procedure they are about to undergo

Failing to thoroughly review the medical history of the patient for potential complications

Failing to provide the patient with preoperative instructions (for example, not letting a patient know that they need to fast for a certain number of hours prior to the surgery)

Anesthesia mistakes that happen during surgery include:

Delaying the administration of anesthesia

Administering too much or too little anesthesia for the operation

Administering the wrong type of anesthesia for the surgery

Failing to monitor or administer surgical oxygen properly

Failing to monitor the vital signs of the patient

Improperly inserting the intubation tube

Using equipment that is defective or faulty

Failing to identify or treat developing complications

A member of the surgical team being under the influence of drugs or alcohol during the procedure

Anesthesia-related mistakes that occur after surgery include:

Leaving a patient sedated for too long

Leaving a patient who is still anesthetized unattended

Failing to provide post-operative instructions

Complications and Injuries Related to Anesthesia Errors

Errors involving anesthesia can cause a variety of complications and injuries. While some are minor and temporary, some can be severe, serious, and permanent. Complications and injuries include:

Preoperative pain that exceeds what the procedure itself should cause

Nausea and vomiting

Delirium or confusion

Injuries due to intubation

Anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction)

Respiratory issues

Nerve damage

Blood clots

Brain damage

Heart attack

Stroke

Death

Even when the best care is provided by medical staff, mistakes can happen. For anesthesia mistakes to be considered medical malpractice, it has to be proven that a medical professional failed to meet the accepted standard of care or that they behaved negligently, and that the error caused the patient injury or harm. Hiring an experienced medical malpractice attorney is in your best interest to help you prove these details.

If You Suffered Injury Due to an Anesthesia Mistake

If you or a loved one suffered an injury due to an anesthesia error, or you suspect that is the case, the Law Office of Joseph Osborne can help you determine how to proceed with your claim. Contact our office today for a free consultation and review of your case.

Can Cerebral Palsy Be Caused by Medical Malpractice?

Can Cerebral Palsy Be Caused by Medical Malpractice?

By | Medical Malpractice | No Comments

There is nothing more exciting for couples than the birth of their child. Their expectations for their new baby knows no bounds, but their biggest hope is that their child will be carried to term and born healthy. Unfortunately, that doesn’t always happen. There may be complications during pregnancy or childbirth that can cause a baby to develop cerebral palsy. Sometimes, those complications are a result of medical malpractice.

What is Cerebral Palsy?

Cerebral palsy is a serious health problem often resulting from not enough oxygen reaching an infant’s brain during labor or delivery. Its impact on the child and parents is lifelong, emotionally and financially. While some babies are born with cerebral palsy through no fault of anyone, about 10 percent of babies born with it developed it due to medical mistakes. That may not seem like a big number, but to those affected by cerebral palsy, it’s huge.

Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder that impedes muscle coordination and body movement. While there are numerous factors that can result in cerebral palsy, regarding birth injuries and cases of medical malpractice, the most common reason is a deficient amount of oxygen reached the baby’s brain during labor or delivery.

Most children who have cerebral palsy were born with the condition, whether caused by malpractice or other factors, although it may not be diagnosed by doctors for the first few years of life. Cerebral palsy is considered a non-progressive condition, which means that it doesn’t get worse over time. It occurs in about three out of every thousand births in the nation.

When Medical Malpractice Leads to Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy is often caused by hypoxia (insufficient oxygen to the brain), asphyxia (insufficient oxygen to the body), premature delivery, or trauma during birth. All of these causes can result from medical malpractice and mistakes made during labor or childbirth.

However, just because a baby is born with cerebral palsy, it doesn’t always mean that medical mistakes have been made. There are times that doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals act with the greatest care while attending to mother and baby, and there are still negative outcomes. But when medical negligence is the cause of cerebral palsy, these are the most common mistakes:

failure to monitor the fetal heart rate appropriately during labor and childbirth

failure to identify and treat infections in the mother during her pregnancy

failure to identify a prolapsed umbilical cord

failure to schedule and perform a cesarean section when the baby is too large to deliver vaginally

delaying a cesarean section needed due to an emergency

other negligence or mistakes in using medical instruments like forceps or vacuum during delivery

Once the baby is delivered and it is discovered that he or she has suffered a lack of oxygen, there is often still time to prevent cerebral palsy from developing if the doctor acts quickly. Time is critical – every moment that passes without the baby having enough oxygen increases the risk of cerebral palsy. One way that oxygen deprivation can be helped is with hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy involves the baby being placed in a chamber that is full of 100 percent oxygen, which floods the tissue and slows the trauma to the brain. This treatment can lessen or eliminate the baby’s case of cerebral palsy.

If a doctor doesn’t act quickly or opts to not use hyperbaric oxygen therapy (when it is available), then the subsequent case of cerebral palsy can be found to be the doctor’s fault.

Taking Care of a Child with Cerebral Palsy

Taking care of a child with cerebral palsy is costly, can take a toll on the family emotionally, and it often requires a lifetime of care. That care, which includes medical expenses, therapy, home care, rehabilitation, and more, can easily reach $1 million in a lifetime. If the condition was caused by medical malpractice, a lawsuit can be filed which holds the responsible party liable for his or her negligence and provides compensation to the child and the family.

If your child has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, and you suspect that there was medical malpractice involved, contact medical malpractice attorney, Joe Osborne, at (561) 293-2600 for an evaluation of your case.

What to Do If You are In a Car Accident During a Test Drive

What to Do If You are In a Car Accident During a Test Drive

By | Accident, Car Accidents | No Comments

If you have ever purchased a car, then you know how important it is to take it for a test drive before you make your decision to buy it. The test drive is an exciting step in the process of buying a car. While accidents occurring during a test drive don’t happen very often, if one does happen, there are some questions that are raised that are different from those asked about normal car accidents. Here are some of the questions that arise when there is an accident during a test drive, and the answers to them.

Who Is Responsible for the Car Crash?

Like any car accident, in an accident with a car that is being test driven, the party whose negligence or carelessness caused the accident will be considered responsible for the damages that result. If you committed a traffic violation, were negligent, reckless, or distracted while test driving a vehicle, then you may be found to be liable for the accident.

There are no special rules designated for accidents that occur during a test drive in determining liability. It’s expected that you familiarize yourself with any special nuances (the car’s features and sight lines) before you begin driving it; and that you use proper caution as you develop a level of comfort driving the car (for example, steering, braking, accelerations, etc.).  

If you are involved in a test drive car accident, make sure that you take the same steps you would after any type of car wreck. Record the names and information of all involved drivers, passengers, and witnesses; take pictures of the cars involved and the scene of the accident; report the accident to your insurance company and the police; and, most importantly, call an experienced car accident attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.

Whose Insurance Will Cover the Accident?

Whose insurance will cover the accident will depend on who is found to be at fault. It is especially important to have a car accident lawyer advocating for you during this process, so that if you are not at fault, or if you are only partially at fault, that you do not get taken advantage of by the other insurance companies.

There are typically at least three insurance companies involved when there is an accident during a test drive: the dealership’s, yours, and the other driver’s (there may be one or more other drivers involved, each with their own insurance).

Car dealerships have to carry fleet insurance on all of the vehicles on their lot, and a test driver is usually covered under that policy. Usually, fleet coverage will cover all damages that result from an accident that happens during a test drive, regardless of whose fault the accident was. However, in serious accidents, or when the test driver or the driver of the other involved vehicle is clearly at fault, the dealership may seek to have damages paid in a third-party claim.

If you are found to be at fault for the accident, and the dealership or other involved parties decide to file a claim against you, it will be your insurance company that has to pay for damages, up to the limits of your liability coverage.

If the other driver that is involved in the accident is found to be responsible, then the car dealership will not be able to hold you liable for any damages, instead, they will have to make a claim against the other driver’s insurance. You too can make a claim against the other driver’s insurance if you sustain injuries in the accident.

Seek Help Right Away for a Test Drive Accident

It is easy to get lost in all the red tape that accompanies car accidents. If you or a loved one is injured in an accident during a test drive, let Boca Raton car accident lawyer, Joe Osborne, help you navigate all the complexities involved in making a claim. Contact the Florida law firm of Osborne & Associates at (561) 293-2600, for an evaluation of your car accident and help with how to proceed.

What Does “Open and Obvious” Mean in a Slip and Fall Case?

What Does “Open and Obvious” Mean in a Slip and Fall Case?

By | Slip and Fall Accident | No Comments

If you have suffered an injury in a slip and fall accident caused by a hazardous condition on someone else’s property, it may seem like a cut and dried case of premises liability. Further, it would seem that you would quickly be awarded damages or offered a settlement for your injuries. However, the property owner’s defense attorney will not see it that way, and he may attempt to use the “open and obvious” rule as a defense for his client.

What is the Open and Obvious Rule?

The “open and obvious” rule is an exception to premises liability law that can be used for the defense of a property owner to explain why he or she shouldn’t be held responsible for injuries that resulted from a fall.

Determining whether the open and obvious rule will apply to your case is a question that only an experienced premises liability attorney can answer. Premises liability law is often complicated and hiring a lawyer who is familiar with it is always in your best interest.

What is Considered “Open and Obvious” in the State of Florida?

Generally speaking, property owners have a responsibility to the people who visit their property to keep the area safe, without dangerous or hazardous conditions that could lead to injury. However, according to the open and obvious rule, they may not be liable for their visitors’ injuries when there is a clearly dangerous condition. In other words, visitors are expected to exercise discretion when they come across an obvious danger that is in plain sight.

Some examples of hazards that have been deemed by the courts to be open and obvious are:

Planters that are six feet in diameter

A sidewalk curb

A ladder on the selling floor of a store

Uneven concrete where there were no obstructions to the person’s view

Brick border around a tree

Raised joints where asphalt met concrete in a parking lot

How is the “Open and Obvious” Rule Treated in Florida?

There are numerous ways that the open and obvious rule can be used as a defense for property owners, but it doesn’t always end in their favor. To get a better understanding of how it works, here is an actual example from Florida courts.

In a case in which the plaintiff tripped over some exposed computer cables and fell, no obstacles were blocking her view of the cables and no previous incidents involving similar circumstances ever occurred. When you consider the facts, it is clearly apparent that the cables presented an obvious hazard for tripping.

Nonetheless, the court found that, although the cables qualified as an “open and obvious” condition and discharged the duty to warn, it did not discharge the property owner’s duty to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition. In conclusion, the plaintiff still had a valid claim even though the danger was glaringly obvious.

Learn More about “Open and Obvious” from Premises Liability Lawyer, Joe Osborne

If you or a loved one has been injured in a slip and fall accident, the property owner may attempt to use the open and obvious rule as a defense. It is important that you contact Boca’s slip and fall accident attorney, Joe Osborne for help proving that the dangerous condition was not open and obvious. Contact his office today at (561) 293-2600 to have your case reviewed.

Is Nursing Home Abuse Considered Medical Malpractice?

Is Nursing Home Abuse Considered Medical Malpractice?

By | Medical Malpractice, Medication Errors | No Comments

When parents become a certain age, many children have to consider that they may require more care than they can provide for themselves. When they reach the stage in which they need help with taking care of themselves and doing daily tasks, it’s natural to turn to nursing homes for help. It’s expected that when an elderly relative has to be placed in a nursing home, that they will receive care with kindness and competence, and proper medical care. However, that isn’t always what happens. Some nursing homes do not meet the duty of care that is expected of them and this can result in personal injuries for their patients.

If you have an elderly relative who you suspect is not receiving the proper level of care in a nursing home and they have been injured, your first priority should be to get them out of the environment and into a safe one. The very next thing you should do is consult with a lawyer who is experienced with nursing home abuse cases to help you gather the necessary evidence to help you with a case.

When Is Nursing Home Abuse Medical Malpractice?

Typically, the reason that people move into nursing homes is because they are not able to take care of their medical needs (which are often increasing) on their own at home. One of the most important services that nursing homes provide their residents is medical care. Unfortunately, there are times when they don’t do so appropriately, and it results in injury. Your medical malpractice lawyer will have an extensive understanding of nursing home liability and be able to tell you when an injury sustained there is considered medical malpractice.

Some of the most common forms of nursing home abuse that are considered medical malpractice are:

Medication errors

Physical or sexual abuse of residents

Malnourishment or dehydration

Failing to obtain the care of a doctor or registered nurse to access residents’ medical issues or complaints

Unsanitary conditions that cause infections

Malfunctioning medical equipment

Untrained, or insufficiently trained staff

Many nursing home residents are already in a declining or fragile state, which means that any neglect or abuse that they suffer may lead to serious injuries – even premature death.

Keep in mind that if your loved one is injured at a nursing home, it’s likely that the facility’s administrators will be cooperative and seem understanding, taking action to correct any errors or misdoings. Remember, that even so, they are looking out for their own best interests, not those of your loved one. It isn’t uncommon for nursing homes to offer families compensation for an injury and asking them to sign documentation that releases them from responsibility for the abuse. If this happens to your family, don’t sign anything and seek help from a medical malpractice attorney immediately.

Get Help for Your Nursing Home Medical Malpractice Case

If you have a relative who resides in a Florida nursing home, be aware of changes in their physical and mental health, and if you suspect nursing home abuse, contact Boca Raton medical malpractice attorney, Joe Osborne, for help with your case. He will provide you with the guidance you need and will advocate for your loved one in a lawsuit if it is a case of medical malpractice. Call today at (561) 293-2600, to get started on your case. Don’t delay, you have a limited amount of time in which to file your claim.

How Does Comparative Negligence Affect My Slip and Fall Case?

How Does Comparative Negligence Affect My Slip and Fall Case?

By | Accident, Slip and Fall Accident | No Comments

If you have suffered injuries as a result of a slip and fall accident in Florida, you may wonder if you have a personal injury case from which you can recover damages. Slip and fall cases, which are considered premises liability cases, involve negligence on the part of the property owner (or manager) where you fell. They assert that the owner or manager didn’t take the reasonable precautions to make the area safe for those passing through.

For example, there may have been a danger on the property, like a wet floor, and the owner or manager of the property didn’t clean it up or place a “wet floor” sign to warn about the danger. The failure to do one of those things may result in you falling and being injured.

The property owner’s failure to take reasonable precautions is considered negligence, and you may have a valid slip and fall claim. However, it’s possible that the property owner will argue that you had fault in the accident. If it is determined that you did have some fault in the accident, it’s referred to as comparative negligence.

Understanding Comparative Negligence in Slip and Fall Accidents

It is the responsibility of the defendant to establish comparative negligence. That means that the property owner must prove that you did not demonstrate reasonable care or that you behaved in a dangerous manner, and that your behavior was at least partially responsible for the injuries that you suffered.

How does this affect your slip and fall accident case? If the defendant is able to prove that comparative negligence exists, then your settlement or recovery in a trial may be much less than if the defendant was found completely responsible for your injuries.

How Do Defendants Establish Comparative Negligence in Slip and Fall Cases?

Typically, the property owner will attempt to prove that you were acting in an irresponsible manner or doing something that you shouldn’t have been doing to establish that you are partly responsible for the accident and your injuries.

Some of the common arguments that defendants in slip and fall accident cases will use to establish comparative negligence are:

You were not paying sufficient attention when your accident happened

You were somewhere on the property that you shouldn’t have been

You did not pay attention to warnings about the dangerous condition

You didn’t have appropriate footwear, or your footwear caused the accident

The dangerous condition was clearly visible

If Comparative Negligence is Proven, What Does It Mean for You?

If your slip and fall accident case goes to trial, the court has to determine who is responsible for the accident and how much responsibility they have. If it’s found that you and the defendant share responsibility, then your compensation will be adjusted based on the percentage of fault you are determined to have.

Get Help from a Slip and Fall Accident Lawyer

Defendants and their attorneys will commonly try to prove that the injured person was at fault in slip and fall cases. That is why it is important that you seek the help of a slip and fall accident attorney if you or a loved one is injured on someone else’s property.

Florida slip and fall lawyer, Joe Osborne, can help you with your case, and fight for you if comparative negligence is alleged against you. Contact him at (561) 293-2600, for an evaluation of your slip and fall case and help with how to proceed.

When Are Birth Injuries Considered Medical Malpractice?

When Are Birth Injuries Considered Medical Malpractice?

By | Medical Malpractice | No Comments

There is no more exciting time in a couple’s life than when they are expecting a child. It’s a time of anticipation, hope, and joy, as they await the birth of their baby. Fortunately, for most parents, pregnancies, labor, and delivery go smoothly and they bring home a beautiful and healthy baby shortly after it’s born. However, there are times that this doesn’t happen due to complications that put both mother and child at risk. If these complications are found to have been avoidable, and either mother or baby suffered injuries as a result, it may be a case of medical malpractice.

How Do Birth Injuries Occur?

While there are many ways that birth injuries can occur, they typically fall into one of two categories – either a medical professional fails to recognize or treat a condition, or there are injuries to the mother or child that are a result of negligent prenatal medical care.

The first category involves situations like a doctor failing to diagnose risky conditions like a mother’s high blood pressure, the misuse of medical instruments (for example, forceps or vacuum), not monitoring the baby’s heart rate correctly, or failing to perform a cesarean section when needed. In these situations, the doctors and other medical professionals involved may be held liable in a medical malpractice lawsuit.

The second category involves the prenatal care that the expectant mother receives. For instance, this may include situations like the prescription of medications that may be harmful to the mother or baby. If this occurs, the prescribing doctor, pharmacist, and even the manufacturer of the medication may be held responsible in a medical malpractice case.

When There is a Birth Injury to the Infant

If an infant is injured during childbirth, parents or guardians of the baby, together with their medical malpractice attorney, must bring the lawsuit against the responsible parties. They are able to ask for compensation for general and special damages on behalf of their baby. These include medical expenses, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life, and they can be for present and future damages.

The parents of the baby may also be able to seek damages for their pain and suffering due to the injuries that their child sustained.

When There is a Birth Injury to the Mother

If a mother is injured during childbirth, she can file a claim against the responsible parties. She too, is able to seek general and special damages for present and future damages suffered due to medical negligence or errors during delivery.

Finding Help for Your Birth Injury Claim

Proving medical malpractice in birth injury claims can be difficult. It requires knowledgeable medical malpractice attorneys with access to expert medical witnesses to review and evaluate medical charts and records.

Anytime that there is a birth injury that could have been prevented, the family may be entitled to a financial recovery for the financial and emotional burdens they have suffered as a result of medical negligence.

If you, or someone in your family, have suffered injuries that occurred during pregnancy, labor, or delivery in Florida, birth injury attorney, Joe Osborne, can help you with your case. Contact his office today at (561) 293-2600, for a review of your case and advice on how to proceed with your medical malpractice claim.

What Do You Need to Know Before Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

What Do You Need to Know Before Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

By | Personal Injury | No Comments

If you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, then you may be able to file suit against them and receive compensation for financial expenses and pain and suffering resulting from the injury. There are several basics, but important, point that you should know about personal injury lawsuits in Florida before you file. If, after considering the following points you decide you will file, or if you don’t know whether or not you should, then it is in your best interest to consult an experienced personal injury attorney. A personal injury attorney will be abreast of Florida’s laws and will be essential to getting you the most substantial compensation for your injury.

How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in Florida?

All states have limitations on how long you have to file a lawsuit. The length of time depends on the type of suit. In Florida you generally have four years to file a personal injury lawsuit, unless it is a medical malpractice case, in which case, you only have two years. The countdown begins when the injury or accident causing the injury takes place, so it is imperative that you have your case evaluated and begin proceedings as soon as possible following the injury.

How is Negligence Proven in a Personal Injury Case?

To have a personal injury case, you have to be able to prove that the at-fault party was negligent – that their action (or inaction) caused you harm. There are three specific conditions that have to be met in order to prove a personal injury case. First, you have to show that the party who caused your injury had a responsibility not to harm you and that he or she breached that responsibility. Second, you have to prove that breaching that responsibility caused your injury. Lastly, you have to show that you have suffered damages and/or financial loss as a result of the injury.

What Are Damages, and What Am I Entitled to?

In a personal injury case, you are able to seek compensation from whoever caused you to have a financial loss, property damage, or any other kind of loss, due to your injury. The legal term for this type of compensation is damages. In a Florida personal injury case, you may be entitled to damages for the following:

Medical bills (except for car accidents)*

Disability and disfigurement

Pain and suffering

The repair or replacement of property damaged

Lost wages

The expense of hiring help to do household task that you are no longer able to do

Emotional trauma

Other costs that are determined to be caused by your injury

*Because Florida is a no-fault state and it requires every driver to have a Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance policy with $10,000 of coverage, medical expenses in a car accident case are paid by the injured party’s own insurer.

Finding an Attorney for Your Florida Personal Injury Case

If you have been injured due to negligence on someone else’s part, it’s important that you find a personal injury lawyer to review your case. Attorney Joe Osborne is an experienced personal injury attorney who is ready to help you with your lawsuit. If you have been the victim of someone else’s negligence, and have sustained injuries from it, call Osborne & Associates today at (561) 293-2600 for a case evaluation.

What is a Letter of Protection in a Personal Injury Case?

What is a Letter of Protection in a Personal Injury Case?

By | Personal Injury | No Comments

When you are injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, whether it’s a car accident, slip and fall accident, medical malpractice, or other personal injury, and you don’t have medical insurance or the coverage you do have isn’t sufficient to cover your medical expenses, a Letter of Protection might be a solution for you.

A personal injury case cannot likely be proven if you do not receive medical care. However, if you don’t have money to pay medical bills, then you cannot obtain the medical care you need. Essentially, a Letter of Protection (LOP) is a contract that is agreed upon by you, your attorney, and your doctors. It will allow you to get the medical attention you need from your medical provider, while your attorney agrees to pay the provider from the settlement you receive before you have access to any of the financial reward.

What Are the Stipulations in a Letter of Protection?

While the specific language in letters of protection can vary, they generally state:

That the medical provider will treat your conditions while your case is pending.

That the medical provider will not demand immediate payment of your medical expenses and will not turn your account over to collections, thereby leaving your credit undamaged, as long as the letter of protection is in effect.

That your attorney will pay your medical provider directly from your personal injury settlement as soon as the funds clear the trust account.

Not all doctors or medical providers will choose to enter into such an agreement, but many will.

How Does a Letter of Protection Affect the Settlement Distribution?

To better understand how a LOP affects the settlement process, you first need to know how the settlement process normally works. When a settlement in a personal injury case is reached, the insurance company of the defendant will mail a check to the plaintiff’s attorney, which the attorney then deposits into a trust account. The trust account is an account that is heavily regulated by the Florida Bar, in order to protect clients. The attorney then must wait for the settlement check to clear. Once it’s cleared, the lawyer has to obtain an approval from the client about how the funds are to be disbursed. Then, a check is written to the attorney for costs and fees, and a check is written to the client for the remainder.

When a letter of protection is being used, before the check is written to the client, there will be a check written to the medical provider to cover the client’s medical bills, since they were not paid up front. Keep in mind, a LOP doesn’t mean that the client isn’t responsible for the medical bills. Even when there is no financial recovery in a case, the bills have to be paid – by the client.

Letters of protection can be a useful tool when a client cannot pay his or her medical bills resulting from a personal injury. If you have been injured due to negligence, but have no way to pay your medical bills, discussing a letter of protection with your personal injury lawyer is a great idea – one that may work well for you, allowing you to get the medical attention you need and the compensation you deserve for your damages.

Boca’s personal injury attorney, Joe Osborne, can help you determine the best way to proceed with your case and your medical expenses. Contact him today at (561) 293-2600, to get started on your case. Don’t delay, you have a limited amount of time in which to file your claim.

 

What is a "Never Event" in Medical Malpractice?

What is a “Never Event” in Medical Malpractice?

By | Medical Malpractice | No Comments

Some errors that are made by doctors, nurses and other medical professionals are so serious that they are considered “never events.” When these types of mistakes are made, it is likely that you have a potential case of medical malpractice.

What is a Never Event?

Basically, a never event is a mistake that is so extreme, it is inexcusable. These are errors that should never occur, under any conditions, so they have been labeled “never events.” The following is a list of mistakes that are defined as never events:

Surgical mistakesErrors occurring during surgery that is considered never events include performing surgery on the wrong patient or wrong body part or leaving an item inside a patient’s body (for example, a surgical sponge, medical instrument, or medical device).

Product or device mistakes – Never events involving products or devices include the misuse of a device or the use of a contaminated device or drug that results in the death of the patient.

Environmental events – These never events include oxygen lines containing the wrong gas or no gas at all, electrical shock, burn injuries, and the use of restraints that result in serious injury or death.

Radiological events – When a metal object is introduced into the MRI area and the mistake causes serious injury or death, it is considered a never event.

Patient protection mistakes – When a patient who is unable to care for himself is discharged to someone who is not an authorized person, or the patient disappears from the medical facility, and there is a subsequent injury, disability, or death, it may be considered a never event. Additionally, if a patient commits suicide or attempts to commit suicide while being cared for in a medical facility, it may be considered a never event.

Medical care management events – Never events in this category are numerous. They may include medication errors or the unsafe administration of blood products that result in serious injury or death, harm to mother or baby during childbirth in a pregnancy designated low-risk, the loss of a biological specimen, artificial insemination with the wrong donor egg or sperm, or the serious injury or death of a patient due to a failure to provide adequate follow-up care. Other care management never events may include if a patient develops stage three or four pressure ulcers (bed sores), or if a patient suffers a serious fall while in a medical facility.

Criminal acts – If medical care is provided by someone who is impersonating a medical professional, if there is an abduction of a patient, or there is a sexual or physical abuse of a patient by a medical care provider in a medical facility, it is considered a never event.

The above are all situations and events that should never happen in a healthcare facility or setting. If they do, then the medical professional or entity can be held legally responsible for the event.

Find Help for Your “Never Event”

If you or a loved one has been a victim of one of the egregious mistakes mentioned above, you should contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible. You are likely entitled to compensation for the injuries and damages you have sustained. Let medical malpractice attorney, Joe Osborne Law Firm  help you get the compensation you deserve.