Malpractice lawsuits involving healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) are challenging but manageable by any Long Island medical malpractice lawyer, because once proof of negligence is found, the case is as good as closed. Eric Chaffin writes about one such incident in The Legal Examiner that awarded the plaintiff millions in damages.
A male New York construction worker received an injection at Hudson Valley Radiology Associations where he had an MRI in 2010. Days later, he had a culture done at Nyack Hospital which showed he had a serious infection. The attending physician sent the patient home instead of treating the infection. Two days later, the man was rushed back to the hospital with significant hip damage that required surgery. Given the nature of the man’s profession, he stands to lose a significant amount in wages.
Jury awards plaintiff
According to the man’s complaint, Dr. Jason Fond, the head of Nyack Hospital’s orthopedic surgery unit, was negligent in failing to treat the infection. After a three-week trial, a jury awarded the man $2.3 million in damages. Although justice was served in this man’s case, not all who pursue a medical malpractice case are as fortunate.
Impact of HAIs
Pneumonia, gastrointestinal illnesses, urinary tract infections, bloodstream infections, and surgical site infections are some examples of HAIs which can lead to significant organ damage and, possibly, death. A 2013 study reported the five most common infections contracted by patients in hospitals cost the U.S. healthcare system nearly $10 billion annually.
Experienced medical malpractice lawyers, such as those at the law offices of Joseph M. Lichtenstein, would also concur with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) prevalence survey, which indicates that on a given day, 1 out of 25 hospital patients contracts a HAI, which leads to medical malpractice lawsuits.
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) back in 2011, meanwhile, shows that around 34% of medical malpractice claims involve surgical errors, while about 46% involve diagnostic errors. Failure to properly interpret a diagnostic test and take action accordingly is just as bad as committing a surgical error. If you are in need of insight or advice about a recent procedure, consult authorities or Long Island medical malpractice lawyers regarding legal consequences of such.
(Article excerpt and image from “New York Orthopedic Surgeon Held Liable for Failing to Treat Infection”, 29 September 2014, The Legal Examiner)