From Defective Drugs to Malpractice: Potential Medical Dangers

By on 4-12-2015 in Medical Risks, Personal Injury

An effective health care system is an integral part of any community. Medical professionals and pharmaceutical companies play an important role in making sure this system is working well within the quality standards mandated by their profession. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case in real-life scenarios. Sometimes, instances of malpractice and negligence could lead to potential medical dangers and risk the lives of patients expecting the best quality of care.

According to the National Practitioner Data Bank under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a total of 160,619 cases of medical malpractice payments were reported between the years 2003 until 2013. During that time, there were 359,265 recorded medical practitioners in America. In a separate report published by American Nurse Today, researchers estimate that 7,000 people die annually of adverse drug events and medication errors. These alarming statistics only prove that the potential dangers of medical negligence need to be addressed right away.

The community can hold health care professionals to the high standards of their profession by learning more about what goes on behind these devastating scenarios. In this article, we’ll discuss a few of the different situations that could potentially bring harm to patients. These situations vary in contexts. Sometimes, patients are endangered due to carelessness in the part of the doctor. Other times, they could also be hurt by defective drugs and similar pharmaceutical errors.

It is clear from the previously discussed data that medical malpractice is a serious issue in the health care industry. While it may not happen often, it does happen with some notable frequency. Cases of medical malpractice can range from birth injuries, surgical errors, misdiagnosis, and even wrongful death. Basically, any scenario caused by a medical professional’s negligence or carelessness can be considered a case of medical malpractice. Oftentimes, such cases lead to serious consequences.

For example, birth injuries can be caused by a doctor’s negligence any time before or during the delivery. Cerebral palsy is some of the unfortunate outcomes that result from birth injuries. According to the website of the Driscoll Firm, children with cerebral palsy will face long-term problems with movement, communication, and cognition. Sometimes, they are genetically predisposed to the condition, sometimes they are not.

In some cases, medical dangers such as birth injuries also result from defective pharmaceuticals. An example of which is the side effects caused by a drug called Depakote. Williams Kherkher reports on its website that the drug, which is intended to treat manic episodes and seizures for patients with bipolar disorder, has led to many cases of babies born with serious defects. The FDA has issued warnings about the links between birth injuries and the drug. In particular, they cited that pregnant women taking Depakote could end up giving birth to children with spina bifida, brain defects, malformation of face or skull, and malformation of the cardiovascular system.

These grave scenarios only touch on a few cases show potential medical dangers. It only goes to show that the health care community should be held accountable for any instances of negligence that could lead to any dangerous outcomes. In turn, the public should play an active role in making sure these outcomes don’t fall through the cracks. Anyone devastated by medical dangers should approach an experienced personal injury lawyer to learn about their legal options.

Common Causes of Car Accidents in America

By on 4-12-2015 in Medical Risks, Personal Injury

The United States Census Bureau reports that there was an average of 10.6 million car accidents that happened from 2004 until 2009. This means that for each year, about 10 million incidents are reported to traffic officials. These statistics only prove that car accidents are a common occurrence in America. While some of these reported accidents resulted in minor damages, most of them led to serious injuries and fatalities. As emphasized by the website of Ali Mokaram, such outcomes can result in long-term consequences that are often very hard to overcome.

For the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are two main suspects for these devastating outcomes. According to data presented in the CDC website, car accidents commonly result from distracted driving and alcohol impaired driving.

What is distracted driving?

According to CDC, distracted driving happens when a person splits their attention between driving and another activity. Such activities can be in the form of visual, manual, or cognitive distractions. Most of the time, distracted driving activities involve a driver using their cellphones to make calls or send texts. However, the simple act of taking your eyes off the road or taking your mind off the act of driving can also lead to accidents and crashes. Distracted driving is said to have caused 3,328 fatalities in the year 2012.

What is alcohol impaired driving?

Alcohol impaired driving is another scenario that typically leads to majority of car accidents in America. The CDC estimates that it leads to about 30 fatalities every day. Because of such alarming statistics, driving under the influence (DUI) and driving while intoxicated (DWI) are considered as some of the most serious traffic law violations that drivers could be charged with. While penalties will differ from state to state, punishment for DUI and DWI are usually very stringent. In Texas, for example, the website of the Law Offices of Mark T. Lassiter points out that alcohol-related violations could lead to license suspension, paying substantial fines, and even serving time in prison.

Medical Errors that Lead to Wrongful Death

By on 4-12-2015 in Medical Risks, Personal Injury

Working as a medical professional comes with a certain set of responsibilities. When you hold the the life and well-being of other individuals in your hands, there’s very little room to commit any errors. As emphasized on the website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, the primary concern of doctors, surgeons, nurses, and other hospital personnel is the health and safety of their patients. When this responsibility is eclipsed by careless and negligent mistakes, these professionals are recognized by law as accountable for damaging consequences that their errors could have caused.

It is an unfortunate reality that the number of medical malpractice cases in the U.S. has been on the rise in recent years. The Civil Justice Resource Group estimates that about 25,000 to 120,000 cases involving medical negligence will lead to patient’s wrongful death. Similarly, the Journal of American Medical Association reports that about 225,000 people die every year due to medical malpractice. In most scenarios, wrongful death is simply due to errors that fall below the standard of care required by the medical profession. A Nashville personal injury lawyer may cite the following as common factors that lead to fatal outcomes:

  • Failure to properly diagnose the patient’s condition
  • Giving a wrong diagnosis
  • Failure to provide proper treatment in a timely manner
  • Errors while providing treatment in the emergency room or during surgery
  • Birth injuries due to errors made during labor and delivery
  • Infections due to unsanitary conditions

Patients who seek treatment from medical professionals expect to receive the best quality of care. It’s important that doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals are held to a standard that matches these expectations. Closer scrutiny of hospitals and other medical institutions can help in this regard. Cases of wrongful death are tragic but avoidable. As law firm Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. says on its website, the families of victims have legal options they can consider to seek out the justice they deserve.