Tuesday, 16 of January of 2018

Tag » hospital

Florida Woman Paralyzed Due to Doctors’ Negligence Receives Settlement

The physicians ignored the patient's medical needs and missed what should have been a simple diagnosis.

By Jim Lewis, Medical Negligence Attorney in Virginia

“A 61-year-old East Naples [Florida (FL)] woman who walked to an ambulance in March 2005 and left NCH North Naples Hospital paralyzed has resolved her lawsuit against three doctors.”

That is opening sentence of an October 15, 2011, Naples Daily News article I read with great interest because much of my practice as a Virginia-based medical malpractice lawyer is dedicated to representing victims of doctor’s negligence. Two aspects of the case that I found especially interesting were that the settlement was reached through mediation as the woman and her legal team were preparing for a second civil trial and that the defendant physicians had, according to evidence presented in court, ignored the woman’s pleas for treatment and missed a fairly common and serious complication from inserting a catheter along the spine to deliver anesthesia.

Regarding the mediation, the defendants had won a jury verdict absolving them of liability for negligence when the case first went to trial. Later, the judge set aside that decision and ordered a new trial because he determined that defeat for the plaintiff came in large part because one of the jurors had ignored stern warnings to not research or view news about the case outside of the courtroom. The person who committed juror misconduct consistently lied to the court when asked if he had learned anything he did not hear in testimony.

The evidence of how the defendant doctors ignored the woman’s medical needs and misdiagnosed her also struck me. According to the newspaper, the doctors ignored the woman’s screams of pain for six days because they did not consider her condition serious. When a fourth doctor was finally brought in, that person found that the patient had developed a major abscess and infection along her spine where an epidural had been administered. That injury and infection eventually caused total paralysis. Because the woman has regained very limit movement in her arms and feet, she now has an official lifelong diagnosis of quadriparesis.

While I don’t know all the facts of the case, the errors made by the doctors and the negligence they demonstrated certainly appear to have left their patient in much worse health than she was when first entrusted to their care. When health care providers fail in their duty to treat patients to the best of their abilities, those doctors, nurses, pharmacists, surgeons and others must be held accountable. I’m glad that happened in Florida.

EJL

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper, Lewis & Appleton is a law firm whose Virginia/Carolina attorneys focus on injury and accident law and have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctor mistakes and nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see for yourself. Though not every case meets our criteria, we offer free initial consultations. Give us a call at (800) 752-0042. If you can’t get through due to high call volume, leave a message so we can return your call. Also be sure to check out our free special report Top 10 Tips From a Medical Malpractice Insider. Our primary office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA), but we also have offices in Hampton, VA, and Elizabeth City, North Carolina (NC). Our lawyers hold licenses in VA, NC, South Carolina (SC), West Virginia (WV), Kentucky (KY), Florida (FL) and Washington, DC. Rick Shapiro and James Lewis were included in the 2011 issue of Best Lawyers in America. They, along with fellow attorney John M. Cooper, were also named 2011 Virginia Super Lawyers for Personal Injury Law, an honor which fewer than 5 percent of outstanding lawyers receive. We also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube. Further, our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard, Norfolk Injuryboard and Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard blogs as pro bono public information services.


Did Virginia and Carolina Health Providers Have a Different Standard of Care During Hurricane Irene?

The storm was to blame for killing several people in Virginia and North Carolina, destroying shorefront property, and forcing a hospital to run on generator power.

By Kevin Duffan, Virginia Medical Malpractice Attorney

My colleague John Cooper reported recently on our firm’s website that Hurricane Irene was to blame for killing several people in Virginia and North Carolina, destroying shorefront property, and forcing a hospital to run on generator power.  John raised the question of what the standard of care was for medical providers during the natural disaster. Contact Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton, P.C. to discuss all possible claims if you or a loved one suffered serious injuries or death from an accident that was the fault of a hospital.

LC

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton is a law firm whose Virginia/Carolina attorneys focus on injury and accident law and have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctor mistakes and nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see for yourself. Though not every case meets our criteria, we offer free initial consultations. Give us a call at (800) 752-0042. If you can’t get through due to high call volume, leave a message so we can return your call. Also be sure to check out our free special report Top 10 Tips From a Medical Malpractice Insider. Our primary office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA), but we also have offices in Hampton, VA, and Elizabeth City, North Carolina (NC). Our lawyers hold licenses in VA, NC, South Carolina (SC), West Virginia (WV), Kentucky (KY), Florida (FL) and Washington, DC. Rick Shapiro and James Lewis were included in the 2011 issue of Best Lawyers in America. They, along with fellow attorney John M. Cooper, were also named 2011 Virginia Super Lawyers for Personal Injury Law, an honor which fewer than 5 percent of outstanding lawyers receive. We also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube. Further, our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard, Norfolk Injuryboard and Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard blogs as pro bono public information services.


Virginia Beach Man Died After Doctor Failed to Notify Him of Pneumonia Diagnosis

Misdiagnoses can have tragic consequences. At the same time, some mistakes are excusable or unavoidable. The inexplicable actions by numerous doctors in this case include not attempting to reach an accurate diagnosis in the first place (e.g., failing to take x-rays) and then not doing everything possible to get in touch with the sick man so he could receive proper treatment for his ultimately fatally illness.

By John Cooper, Virginia Medical Malpractice Lawyer

A Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA), family recently received a small measure of justice nearly four years after losing a husband, father, son and uncle due to a shocking case of repeated medical malpractice that included misdiagnoses, negligence and errors by multiple private-practice and hospital-based doctors.

The victim’s widow won a $3.5 million verdict against the man’s primary physicians in September 2010, but the money must provide little comfort in light of the circumstances that led to this preventable loss of life.

In late 2006, the 24-year-old man went to his doctor because he was coughing and experiencing chest pain. The physician prescribed a narcotic painkiller but did not take x-rays or diagnosis any lung infection. Over the next week, the man visited other doctors and emergency rooms, eventually receiving the x-rays that allowed health care providers to diagnose pneumonia.

When the man’s first doctor, after even more delay, finally called to tell him he had bacterial pneumonia, the doctor’s staff called the wrong phone number and never placed any follow-up calls. When the man succumbed to his highly treated lung disease, he left behind two young children and a wife.

Fellow malpractice attorney Phil J. Geib helped the man’s survivors win their lawsuit, although the jury verdict was reduced to an award of $1.85 under Virginia’s unfair caps on malpractice penalties.

As this case shows, misdiagnoses can have tragic consequences. At the same time, some mistakes are excusable or unavoidable. The inexplicable actions by numerous doctors in this case include not attempting to reach an accurate diagnosis in the first place (e.g., failing to take x-rays) and then not doing everything possible to get in touch with the sick man so he could receive proper treatment for his ultimately fatally illness.

I am glad to see that those responsible for this medical malpractice and wrongful death were held accountable in court.

EJL

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton is a law firm whose attorneys focus on injury and accident law, and we have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctor mistakes, nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see for yourself. Though not every case meets our criteria, we offer free, initial consultations. Give us a call at (800) 752-0042. If you can’t get through due to high call volume, leave a message and we will return your call promptly. Also be sure to check out our free special report Top 10 Tips from a Medical Malpractice Insider. Our primary office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA), but we also have offices in Hampton, VA, and Elizabeth City, North Carolina (NC).  Our lawyers hold licenses in NC, SC, WV, KY, FL and DC. We also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube . Furthermore, our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard and Norfolk Injuryboard as pro bono public information services.


Elderly Woman Killed by Nursing Home Neglect

By Shapiro, Lewis, Appleton and Favaloro, Nursing Home Neglect Attorney

We often place our elder loved ones in adult care facilities when we begin to worry that they cannot properly take care of themselves. You worry about them eating right, getting around, keeping themselves occupied, and taking their medications correctly — and you believe that a nursing home can help them stay healthy, safe, and comfortable. However some nursing homes fail at their job.  Such was the case in Iowa (IA).

A Davenport nursing home has been fined by the state of Iowa in connection with the death of an elderly resident, less than two weeks after she and another resident of the Ridgecrest Village home were injured in a traffic accident on Nov. 19.  Our thoughts go out to the family for the tragic and preventable loss of their loved one.

According to the Des Moines Register, the van stopped suddenly in traffic, throwing the two residents out of their wheelchairs and onto the van floor. One was a fragile 97-year-old woman.  The van driver told investigators that he’d failed to buckle their safety belts, although their chairs were securely attached to the van’s floor.  That’s the same as saying the seats in a car are secured but the people in it are not.

It was terribly negligent for the driver to forget to buckle in the elderly pair.

His only job was to safely transport the two and he failed, miserably.  It is also sad that the Iowa Department of Inspection and Appeals only fined the nursing home $10,000 for death of this elderly woman.

The department reported that the woman’s death 12 days later was attributed to congestive heart failure as a result of a broken leg and blood loss.  So in essence this woman spent the last days of her life suffering from a totally preventable injury.

CA

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton is a law firm whose attorneys focus on injury and accident law, and we have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctor mistakes, nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see for yourself. Though not every case meets our criteria, we offer free, initial consultations. Give us a call at (800) 752-0042. If you can’t get through due to high call volume, leave a message and we will return your call promptly. Also be sure to check out our free special report Top 10 Tips From a Medical Malpractice Insider. Our primary office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA), but we also have offices in Hampton, VA, and Elizabeth City, North Carolina (NC).  Our lawyers hold licenses in NC, SC, WV, KY, FL and DC. We also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube . Furthermore, our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard and Norfolk Injuryboard as pro bono public information services.


Geriatric Treatment Center With History of Elder Abuse Petitions for Funding

By Randy Appleton, Nursing Home Neglect Attorney

An elderly treatment facility that received a one out of five rating on care quality, largely for failing to “protect patients from injury and abuse,” lost its certification.  Now that facility wants its funding back.  Find out more.

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton is a law firm whose attorneys focus on injury and accident law, and we have experience handling medical malpractice cases involving hospital and doctor mistakes, nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see for yourself. Though not every case meets our criteria, we offer free, initial consultations. Give us a call at (800) 752-0042. If you can’t get through due to high call volume, leave a message and we will return your call promptly. Also be sure to check out our free special report Top 10 Tips from a Medical Malpractice Insider. Our primary office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA), but we also have offices in Hampton, VA, and Elizabeth City, North Carolina (NC).  Our lawyers hold licenses in NC, SC, WV, KY, FL and DC. We also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube . Furthermore, our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard and Norfolk Injuryboard as pro bono public information services.


Hospital Is At Fault For Causing Decubitus Ulcers, Pays $300,000

From John Cooper, Virginia Attorney

There is no excuse for a patient to develop decubitus ulcers (bedsores). Not when prevention takes so little time and effort—simply reposition the body in bed in regular intervals. Read about one woman’s experience in a Virginia (VA) hospital and why the hospital was found guilty of medical malpractice.


Failing Grade: Medical Error Deaths in Teaching Hospitals Spike in July

Shifting a decimal point from 3.5 milligrams to 35 milligrams on a medication can mean the difference between life and death. Given the protracted shifts medical students and doctors work at teaching hospitals, this type of medical error may be more common than at a non-teaching hospital.

By Jim Lewis, Medical Malpractice Attorney

July is the worst month for fatal medical errors in “teaching hospitals” with an average 10 percent spike in mistakes when compared to the entire calendar year, according to a study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine

What is a teaching hospital? Well, it a hospital that provides clinical education and training to future and current doctors, nurses, and other health professionals, in addition to delivering medical care to patients. For pop culture context, the TV show’s ER and Grey’s Anatomy feature teaching hospitals.

The Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Virginia (VA) and East Carolina University School of Medicine in Greenville, North Carolina (NC) are both real-life teaching hospitals featuring medical students and doctors taking care of patients.

Is the fact that teaching hospitals feature new and inexperienced medical professionals the reason behind the spike?  No one can say for sure. The higher-than-average July medical error rate, also referred to as the “July effect,” has been questioned by other studies.

Nevertheless, the studies do point out how even the slightest error can have deadly consequences. For example, shifting a decimal point from 3.5 milligrams to 35 milligrams on a medication can mean the difference between life and death. Given the protracted shifts medical students and doctors work at teaching hospitals, this type of medical error may be more common than at a non-teaching hospital.

Another common cause of medical errors is when a shift-change occurs. This is important at both teaching and non-teaching hospitals. Critical information about your injury and/or medication needs may be overlooked or not mentioned to the new personnel. If you encounter a change in personnel at a hospital, don’t be afraid to ask questions and try to take notes about what was recommended by the first doctor, nurse, or other medical professional you spoke to.

To learn more about common medical mishaps, surgical mistakes, and doctor mistakes, check out these articles and free consumer reports:

About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton is a law firm which focuses on injury and accident law and our attorneys have experience handling medical malpractice cases, which includes hospital/doctor mistakes, and nursing home abuse and neglect. Check out our case results to see for yourself. In addition, check out our FREE special reports on the Top 10 Tips from a Medical Malpractice Insider and the top 5 surgical errors you must know about. Our primary office in based in Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA) and we also have a North Carolina (NC) law office.  Our lawyers hold licenses in NC, SC, WV, KY and DC. We are ready to talk to you by phone right now—we provide free initial confidential injury case consultations, so call us toll free at 1-800-752-0042. Our injury attorneys also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube . Furthermore, our lawyers proudly edit the Virginia Beach Injuryboard and Norfolk Injuryboard as a pro bono public information service. PA