Medical malpractice lawsuits begin with the filing of a complaint with the court in the appropriate jurisdiction. Once the process begins, both sides undertake discovery in an effort to uncover as much relevant information and evidence as possible prior to trial. This information must be shared between the two parties, as to avoid any surprises by the time the case reaches trial. Plaintiffs and defendants are able to negotiate before the trial in an effort to reach a settlement. If no agreement is reached, the parties will be forced to argue their case at trial. Medical malpractice attorneys strongly believe that plaintiffs need to fight for just compensation due to negligence, whether it is through a settlement or trial.
Acquiring Information and Proving the Case
During discovery, each party will conduct interrogatories, depositions, and file many requests for documents, in an effort to get to the bottom of the controversy. The plaintiff is required to prove each and every element of negligence (by a preponderance of evidence in civil court) in order to prevail in his or her medical malpractice claim. The first element is that the defendant (the physician, nurse, or hospital) owed a duty to the patient, such as caring for them or providing treatment.
Medical malpractice attorneys say that the second element of negligence is that the defendant breached his duty of care. When a defendant fails to live up to his duty as a professional caretaker, this duty is breached. Third, a plaintiff must show that the actions of the defendant, through the breach of his duty, directly caused the injury that has been sustained.
Finally, lawyers need to prove the plaintiff’s damages. Even if a doctor, nurse, healthcare provider, or hospital has been negligent (and fulfilled the first three elements), there is no claim without losses. Once the medical malpractice attorneys present and prove the plaintiff’s case, the injured party will be awarded damages from the fact-finder as compensation.
Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia
If you have recently undergone surgery and have been the victim of medical malpractice or negligence, it is likely that you may wish to speak with medical malpractice attorneys. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.
Legislators in Raleigh, NC are in search of a manageable way to reform the medical malpractice laws within the state. Medical malpractice attorneys, on the other hand, find this to be extremely detrimental to potential victims of negligence whose sole means to recovery comes through the judicial system.
Damage Should not be Limited when a Jury Finds Liability
The legal system uses money damages in many different ways. Compensatory damages are generally used to compensate the plaintiff for any harm that the defendant has caused. Punitive damages are used to set an example and punish a defendant for particularly egregious harm. One particular portion of the legislation in North Carolina that has medical malpractice attorneys “up at arms” is the $500,000 cap on non-economic money damages. This means that damages that go beyond mere lost wages and the cost of medical care that were caused by medical negligence would now be limited. This is a debatable position for the legislature to take because many cases involve specific circumstances in which pain, suffering, loss of consortium (spousal loss of companionship and affection), hedonic damages (loss of life’s pleasure), and many other non-economic losses will far eclipse the proposed cap.
It is hard to say that a child who loses a limb or a mother who loses her voice due to medical malpractice should be limited in their recovery. The legislature defends the current debate because of the unpredictable nature of pain and suffering awards which lead to ever increasing malpractice insurance premiums within the healthcare industry. The debate will surely rage on within the states and in Washington, but medical malpractice attorneys hope that an individuals’ right to bring a lawsuit when they have been harmed is not limited by an overbearing legislative decision.
Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia
If you have recently undergone medical treatment but something went wrong which you believe is attributable to medical negligence, you probably have some questions. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.
Our team is dedicated to earning full and fair compensation for victims of medical negligence.
The state of Florida has recently passed significant restrictions on an injured patient’s ability to seek lawsuits against medical professionals within the state. With the stronger regulations, medical malpractice attorneys are now faced with a much more difficult road to seek justice and a fair outcome for their clients. Limitations on potential damages and restrictions on plaintiffs’ ability to call expert witnesses may handcuff attorneys and their injured clients in seeking a fair result.
Medical Profession vs. Injured Patients: Florida’s Cost Benefit Analysis
Throughout the past decade, Florida has been seeking solutions to keep quality doctors within the state. The lack of major liability in medical malpractice lawsuits will be a major motivating factor for physicians when they ultimately select a location to practice. If doctors can decrease their financial outlay on insurance and other means to protect themselves against lawsuits, they will see a significant increase in their profit margin. The state had worried that they lagged behind much of the nation in recruiting and maintaining specialty doctors in fields such as orthopedics and neurology.
Clearly, it is a major state interest to have a strong medical system with top notch doctors. The problem arises when seriously injured patients are not able to receive the full and fair amount in damages. The debate will rage on when patient interests are examined under a microscope. If people are seriously injured due to major medical malpractice, it does not seem fair to limit their ability to pursue a jury trial, a right guaranteed under the Constitution of the United States of America. This legislation may or may not increase the quality of medical care within the state of Florida, but it will definitely limit the ability of innocent victims of malpractice to seek a fair outcome through the legal process.
Medical Malpractice Attorneys in New Jersey and Philadelphia
If you were recently the victim of medical malpractice and you believe you may be entitled to compensation, it is likely that you have some questions. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at 856-833-0600 in New Jersey, or 215-567-2380 in Philadelphia.
Let the medical malpractice attorneys at the Mininno Law Office earn and/or you’re family the compensation you need and deserve.
Family Practice News, an independent, online newspaper that provides timely and relevant news about clinical developments in the field of family medicine, recently reported on a study that showed that specific and firm protocol regarding shoulder dystocia and other birthing hazards could significantly reduce the instances of birth injury.
Standardized Protocol Reduces Birth Injury
The protocol system, called Code-D, reduced the occurences of infant brachial plexus injury (Erb’s Palsy) caused by shoulder dystocia (when a baby’s shoulder gets stuck behind the mother’s pelvic bone by 26%, according to study reports presented at the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine annual meeting.
The study assessed nearly 12,000 vaginal deliveries that utilized the Code-D delivery standards, which include mobilization of experienced staff, a hands-off pause for assessment, and additional varied maneuvers.
Staff at the Jamiaca (NY) Hospital Medical Center were trained with the protocol, which involved practicing on manikins. Staff were trained to utilize the hands-off pause a “breather;” a short pause to take a deep breath, assess the situation, and quickly move on appropriately.
Dr. Inglis, of Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, says that Should Dystocia and brachial plexus injury are on the rise in recent years because of maternal obesity and diabetes. Hopefully, this system that has shown great success for Jamaica Hospital will be implemented in hospitals nationwide and continue to reduce injury in newborns.
Shoulder Dystocia Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia
If your child received an injury to his or her brachial plexus during child birth, it’s possible they are victims of shoulder dystocia and a negligent obstetrician. Contact the Mininno Law Office if you have any questions regarding the condition of your child and/or your legal rights. You may also call at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.
The dropping or falling of a nursing home resident can have serious consequences on that person’s quality of life. Each year, an average nursing home reports one to two falls or drops per resident. About 1,800 older adults living in nursing homes die each year from fall-related injuries.
Residents who experience non-fatal falls can suffer serious injuries that greatly reduce their quality of life. Residents have the right to live their remaining years with dignity, and avoidable falls rob them of this dignity and often accellerate their death.
How serious are these falls?
Nursing home falls can cause serious injuries including head trauma and fractures. Many times, the nursing home resident who suffers a fracture is not a candidate for corrective surgical measures. Falls result in disability, increased functional decline and reduced quality of life. Fear of falling can cause further loss of function, depression, feelings of helplessness, and social isolation.
Why do falls occur more often in nursing homes?
Falling can be a sign of other health problems. People in nursing homes are generally more frail and unstable than older adults living in the community. The problem is that nursing homes don’t always take the appropriate measure to prevent avoidable falls. Also, nursing home employees often take shortcuts that lead to the dropping residents.
Residents are generally older, have more chronic conditions, and have difficulty walking. They also tend to have problems with thinking or memory, to have difficulty with activities of daily living, and to need help getting around or taking care of themselves. Of course, this is generally the reason the family trusted the nursing home to care for their loved one in the first place.
The nursing home has a duty to properly assess a resident’s probability for falls, and to communicate with their physician to institute appropriate measures to prevent avoidable falls and drops.
What are the most common causes of nursing home falls?
Nursing homes know muscle weakness and walking or gait problems are the most common causes of falls among nursing home residents. Environmental hazards, such wet floors, poor lighting, incorrect bed height, and improperly fitted or maintained wheelchairs are also a cause of falls among residents. Medications often increase the risk of falls and fall-related injuries.
Other causes of falls include difficulty in moving from one place to another (for example, from the bed to a chair), poor foot care, poorly fitting shoes, and improper or incorrect use of walking aids.
It is the duty of the nursing home to understand and consider these factors when developing individualized strategies to prevent the resident from falling or being dropped, in order to avoid nursing home abuse.
How can we prevent falls in nursing homes?
Fall prevention takes a combination of medical treatment, rehabilitation, and environmental changes. The most effective interventions address multiple factors. Interventions include:
1. Nursing home staff assessment of resident upon admission to evaluate the degree a resident is at risk for falling.
2. Nursing home staff assessment of resident after a fall to identify and address risk factors and treat the underlying medical conditions.
3. Educating nursing home staff and families about fall risk factors and prevention strategies.
4. Making changes in the nursing home environment to make it easier for residents to move around safely. Such changes include putting in grab bars, adding raised toilet seats, lowering bed heights, and installing handrails in the hallways.
5. Instituting toileting schedules so residents do not try to go to the bathroom without assistance.
6. Using devices such as alarms that go off when residents try to get out of bed or move without help.
Do physical restraints help prevent falls?
The biggest misconception for the public is that restraints lower the risk of falls or fall injuries. Restraints should not be used as a fall prevention strategy. Restraints can actually increase the risk of fall-related injuries and deaths. Limiting a resident’s freedom to move around leads to muscle weakness and reduces physical function.
Doctors are more likely to order the lowering of beds and the placement of soft mats around them to prevent injury from falls.
Nursing Home Abuse in NJ and PA: Mininno Law Office
The nursing home abuse attorneys at the Mininno Law Office are dedicated to fighting for those wronged by abusive and negligent treatment in the nation’s nursing homes.
If you or a loved one have been negatively affected by nursing home abuse or negligence, please contact the Mininno Law Office and get a free case evaluation. You can also call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.
We will fight to get you the settlement that you deserve.