Currently Browsing: Medical Malpractice

Which Doctors Are Sued The Most?

Doctor at DeskDoctors and other medical personnel hold the highest standards of professionalism and trust. They are bound to uphold the highest ethical standards based on the Hippocratic oath which the medical practitioner sworn to when they entered the medical profession. But doctors are humans as well and hence can make errors which unfortunately can lead to injury or death of their patients, which they swore to protect and treat.

While no amount of money can compensate for the lost life, the surviving relatives of the deceased can make the doctor liable for the injury or death of their loved one. Americans file over 17,000 medical malpractice lawsuits every year, according to recent data. This fact of doctors getting involved in medical malpractice was proven by a recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine. Examining information on 66,426 malpractice suits from 915,564 physicians, the study revealed that most doctors don’t settle or lose in lawsuits.

A separate report by Medscape found that 35% of lawsuits were due to “failure to diagnose” and 17% were due to “failure to treat.” According to the New England Journal of Medicine study, certain medical specialties are targeted more than others. So which field of doctors have the most number of medical malpractice lawsuits? This is based on the findings of the Medscape survey involving 4,000 primary care physicians and selected specialists:

  • Obstetrician/Gynecologist – 85 percent
  • Surgeon – 83 percent
  • Orthopedic – 79 percent
  • Radiologist – 72 percent
  • Anesthesiologist – 58 percent
  • Internal Medicine – 46 percent
  • Oncologist – 34 percent

Orthopedists and general surgeons reflected the highest percentage of being the only parties included in a medical malpractice suit with 26 percent and 23 percent, respectively. OB/Gyns came in at third with 18 percent. The survey revealed that older doctors were more likely to be sued for medical malpractice. According to the study, 80 percent of doctors above 60 years old faced a medical malpractice lawsuit.

A Possible Overdose of Anesthesia: A Major Breach to Patient’s Trust

Once a plastic surgeon receives a certification from the American Board of Plastic Surgery, he or she can be regarded as a well-trained and highly-qualified individual, an expert in surgical procedures. This may be part of the reason why 18-year-old Linda Perez from South Florida ended up under the care of Dr. Jacob Freiman, a board-certified plastic surgeon, who services at the Coral Gables Cosmetic Center in Miami.

Linda, mother to a three-year old son, checked into the Coral Gables Cosmetic Center on August 12, 2013, for a breast augmentation surgery. Otherwise known as augmentation mammaplasty, this surgery involves placement of breast implants for increased fullness and improved symmetry of the breasts; the surgery also helps to restore lost breast volume due to weight reduction or pregnancy.

The breast augmentation surgery was expected to last for about an hour and then see Linda back on her feet safe and well. This wasn’t the case, however, as the patient was said to have presented complications during the surgery, suffering from severe heart and brain damage; she was rushed to Mercy Hospital due to this.

Today, three weeks after the surgery, Linda Perez remains in coma, leaving her parents still bewildered about what really happened to their daughter. To keep her breathing, an incision was made through her neck into the trachea (known as tracheotomy)

Dr Jacob Freiman, who carried out the surgery, has a clean professional record, according to the Florida Department of Health. His anesthesiologist, however, Dr Mario Alberto Diaz, was discovered as having served time in 2006 due to online selling of at least 53,000 doses of pain pills; his Florida medical license was also suspended for a period of six months following his conviction.

In a World of Hurt: Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury

They say that getting seriously sick is like being robbed at knifepoint: it hurts both your body and your wallet. But it is worse when the medical professionals to whom you put your trust in let you down; your trip into the hospital could be your last.

According to the website of Massachusetts personal injury lawyers Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, medical malpractice is when a health care professional fails to meet the standards of care that are required of them in the commission of their duties. This can apply to doctors, nurses and other medical personnel. You don’t even have to be sick to become a victim of medical malpractice and suffer a personal injury. For example, if your doctor prescribes you an over-the-counter medication that is contraindicated for your condition, that is considered medical malpractice. The doctor knew or should have known to ensure that you will not be affected adversely by any medication and treatment which is prescribed. This is just one standard of care which is all too often breached.

It is true what the website says when it mentions that medical professionals literally hold your life in their hands, which is why the standards of care are so high for them. Just as medical practitioners deserve to be duly compensated for their services those who suffer preventable harm while under their care should also be compensated.

However, because medical malpractice insurers make it a practice to provide every possible hindrance to a personal injury claim, it can be difficult for a plaintiff to win unless it is handled by a lawyer who specializes in medical malpractice personal injury lawsuits. There is a whole set of laws that vary from state to state that deal with this type of claim which can flummox an attorney with little or no experience, to the detriment of the plaintiff. Make the smart move and retain a lawyer who can handle your case in a competent manner to maximize the chances of success.