Friday, March 25, 2011

Medical Study shows 75% of hospital tests are not followed up on

A recently published article in BMJ Quality and Safety journal has uncovered frightening statistics regarding the percent of tests that are followed up on in hospitals.

According to the journal which analyzed 12 international studies, up to 75% of tests performed on emergency care patients are not followed up on.  This lack of diligence can have serious and dramatic repercussions on patients such as "delayed or missed diagnoses and even death."

If you or a family member has been critically injured due to delayed or missed diagnoses, contact one of our attorneys for help today.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Nursing Home Negligence Basics

Purposes of the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act are to provide nursing home residents with civil enforcement powers and the right to seek compensation through litigation.

The Illinois Nursing Home Care Act is one of the few instances where civil remedies like personal injury litigation are encouraged.  It makes sense that under the Act, Section 622 affidavits are not required in order to bring a claim for nursing abuse.

Under the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act, "actionable neglect includes a failure to provide adequate "personal care" which failure results in physical injury to the resident.

In this framework, "personal care" is usually includes assistance with "movement, bathing or other personal needs or maintenance, or general supervision and oversight of the physical and mental well-being" of the resident.  210 ILCS 45/1-117 and 210 ILCS 45/1-120.

Potentially responsible parties:
  • Owner of Nursing Home;
  • Nursing Home;
  • Stockholders (considered owners).

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Medical Malpractice Reform

An increasingly common point of view is that medical malpractice claims are frivolous lawsuits that tarnish the reputation of doctors and contribute to the cost of medical care. 

In previous posts, I have tried to supply support for arguments that medical malpractice cases are not frivolous lawsuits.  Medical malpractice cases are viewed with a higher level of gravity than many other types of cases because of the complexity, expense and difficulty in even helping an individual who has been injured because of the negligence of a doctor.  Medical malpractice attorneys do not file frivolous lawsuits.  They cannot afford to. 

The Institute of Medicine estimates that there are between 44,000 and 98,000 American deaths each year because of "preventable medical errors,"  and it is highly likely that these numbers are underestimates.  In medical malpractice cases, it is the patient who is harmed.  It is the patient who has been wronged. It is the patient who deserves protection and compensation. Let us not lose sight of this fact.

Theories of Recovery in Illinois Medical Malpractice Cases

One of the guiding principles in our civil legal system is that the law has a remedy for every wrong.  More often than anyone would like, the remedy cannot fully compensate an individual or a family for their loss.  However, any competent personal injury attorney should have as their goal achieving the best possible remedy for the wrongs suffered by their clients.  In the case of medical malpractice matters, the theories of recovery and damages that are recoverable are generally the same as in any other personal injury matter. 

The "Damages" that are recoverable can be found in the Illinois Pattern Jury Instructions:
  1. (physical) pain and (mental) suffering;
  2. disfigurement;
  3. disability/loss of normal life;
  4. aggravation of preexisting ailment or condition (not an element of damages, but a consideration);
  5. increased risk of future harm;
  6. past and future pain and suffering;
  7. emotional distress;
  8. reasonable expense of necessary medical care, treatment, and services, past and present;
  9. lost earnings or profits and those reasonably certain to be lost in the future; and
  10. reasonable and necessary caretaking expenses, present and future;
  11. lost chance doctrine.
It is the medical malpractice attorney's job to ensure that each element of damages applicable to a case is fleshed out in its entirety.  It is the attorney's job to marshal the facts of the case and to procure witness testimony to support their client's claim for compensation.  Ultimately, it is the jury who decides the amount of damages. 

An accomplished medical malpractice attorney will be able to take the facts of your case, and turn them into an argument for deserved compensation.  If you suspect that you have been injured because of medical malpractice, contact an attorney at The Law Offices of Adam J. Zayed, P.C. today.

Inherent difficulties in Medical Malpractice Cases

Our society relies on our medical professionals.  We place our lives in the hands of our doctors.  We let our medical professionals take complete control in many situations.  But when a medical professional breaches a standard of care, the patient who was injured should have a remedy.  Although you won't find it published anywhere that I know of, I am willing to bet that doctors in general feel that patients are entitled to compensation in situations where a standard of care was deviated because of medical malpractice.  In similar fashion, lawyers find it absolutely reprehensible when another member of the profession provides negligent representation.  Professionals do not like to see their profession tarnished by negligent conduct.

Medical malpractice cases are very difficult to bring successfully.  The cases can be very complex and very expensive.  Attorneys bringing medical malpractice cases must be sure that a meaningful deviation from the standard of care was committed.

Statistics for claims brought in medical malpractice cases show that frivolous claims will not be considered:

1. Only 24 percent of medical claims come to an end with a payment;
2. When medical malpractice claims are made, 47.5% of claims result in a payout of $100,000.00 or less;
3. Only 7.1 % of claims result in payment of $1,000,000.00 or more. 

These statistics show that if an attorney is to bring a medical malpractice claim the burden of proof is indeed: the slaughter rule.  Medical malpractice cases are not won when there is a significant dispute on liability. 

If you or a family member has been injured do to medical malpractice, a Chicago attorney at The Law Offices of Adam J. Zayed, P.C. will be able to assess your case and to protect your interests.  Contact one of our attorneys today.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Medical Records: The nature and the need

The creation of medical records is an incredibly important part of the practice of medicine. Each and every time we visit a health care provider, a record is made.  Furthermore, Illinois law requires that "adequate, accurate, timely, and complete medical records are maintained for each patient." 77 Ill.Admin. Code 250.1510(b)(2).

There are many reasons for the creation of adequate medical records:
(1) as documentation of treatment;
(2) as a reference for other healthcare providers;
(3) as documentation of the services that were actually provided for billing purposes.

Medical records also play a hugely important role for attorneys who practice in the field of medical malpractice. Medical records are important in the treatment in a patient, and they are also important in deciphering what went wrong with treatment.

At The Law Offices of Adam J. Zayed, P.C., our attorneys represent people who have been injured due to Medical Malpractice in the Chicago area.  If you believe you or a family member has suffered due to some form of medical malpractice, contact one of our attorneys today for  free, no-obligation consultation.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

New Logo: Zayed Law Offices

At The Law Offices of Adam J. Zayed, P.C. were are proud to announce the development and introduction of a new firm logo that will be used on our future advertisements for legal representation:

The Law Offices of Adam J. Zayed, P.C. provides the highest level of legal representation to people who have been injured due to the negligence of others. Our attorneys represent clients who have suffered from medical malpractice throughout the state of Illinois.
Our medical malpractice attorneys provide representation in the following areas:

  • Medical malpractice, including failure to diagnose, emergency room errors, doctor errors and medication errors

  • Wrongful death

  • Nursing home abuse

  • Surgical Errors

  • Innaugural Post!

    This blog has been created in order to serve as an information tool to those suffering from injury due to medical malpractice injury.  Hopefully this blog will grow into a resource for those who are in need of assistance due to medical malpractice. 

    The very concept of medical malpractice is hard to wrap one's mind around.  We trust our doctors, and we know about all the great works doctors perform.  We watch doctors on television, and we hear about how doctors have performed miracles.  For these reasons, in the event of doctor error, it can be difficult to even think: "I was hurt because of a mistake made by a medical professional."  This blog will hopefully give people the courage, strength, and mindset to stand up for themselves in the event they are wronged. 

    The law presumes that there is a civil remedy for every wrong.  And while this civil remedy may not fully compensate an individual who has suffered an injury, it is that persons right to seek the remedy if they have been wronged.  A wrong committed by a medical professional is no different.  Applying the applicable standard of care, if a doctor has done something that they should not have done or failed to do something they should have done, you should contact a medical malpractice lawyer immediately.  We strongly recommend that you contact a Chicago Medical Malpractice attorney at The Law Offices of Adam J. Zayed, P.C. immediately.