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Bergen County Medical Malpractice Law Blog

Is digital technology in the operating room good or bad?

Of all the work places that should remain free of distractions, hospital operating rooms are high on the list. Some of the technology present in the operating rooms of today includes smartphones, tablets, pagers and computers. While medical personnel rely on these items to perform their duties, when does it represent a risk of hospital negligence?

Distraction in the operating suite has become a hot topic in the digital age. While patients undergoing a medical procedure cannot always know what the surgical team is doing, they deserve to have confidence that they are receiving the complete attention of team members. Anesthesiology professionals have recently addressed the subject of operating rooms and the presence of technology.

Medical malpractice and never events

If you have never heard the term "never events" you are not alone. However, if you believe you have suffered from a surgical error, this is a term with which you should become familiar.

Never events are clearly wrong and often shocking surgical errors that should never occur in surgery situations. In other words, no properly educated and trained surgeon would ordinarily make such horrible mistakes. Some examples of never events include wrong-site surgery, treatment delays, medication errors and post-operative complications.

What can patients do to avoid a misdiagnosis?

A failure to diagnose an ailment correctly puts the patient's life and health at great risk. While no one is infallible, medical personnel have a duty to practice medicine in as safe a manner as possible. This means remaining up-to-date with illnesses, conditions, treatments and diagnostic tools.

Many New Jersey residents want to take a proactive approach to diagnostic procedures, perhaps to avoid a misdiagnosis whenever possible. Fortunately, you can do your part to ensure your diagnosis is as accurate as possible.

Legal assistance necessary to find justice after a birth injury

When a baby is born, it is one of the most precious events parents will ever experience. Unfortunately, tragedy can sometimes mar this event, replacing much of the joy with worry and despair. Regardless of the injuries a baby might suffer during birth, parents want the child to survive, live a happy life and prosper. Some birth injuries might be considered mild but others can seriously impede the child's ability to thrive and to grow.

While birth injuries do not happen all the time, they happen often enough for parents to need an advocate at their side. An attorney familiar with lawsuits involving a birth injury is often the best candidate to fill this role due to his or her prior experience.

Supreme Court to decide if malpractice contributed to suicide

It is a concept not usually considered in typical suicide cases—whether a doctor's error or malpractice played a role in the deceased's actions. New Jersey families who have suffered the loss of a loved one by his or her own hand face a particularly rough road to healing. Often, they look for someone to blame for the tragedy that has taken over their lives. In most cases, this search remains fruitless, but a recent report illustrates how it might be possible for a doctor's action or inaction to contribute to suicide.

In 2008, a female patient called her doctor's office to report she was suffering from mental strain, was crying easily and experiencing additional problems. Reportedly, the woman's doctor responded by changing her medication and issuing her a referral for a gastroenterologist. According to the story, the woman hanged herself and was found dead the next day.

When hospital negligence occurs, justice is deserved

No one looks forward to a stint in the hospital, even if it is just a few hours for outpatient surgery. One way that New Jersey patients get through the experience is by reassuring themselves about the trained professionals who will provide them with medical care.

Unfortunately, there are times when patients may leave the hospital in worse condition than they were in when they arrived. When hospital negligence is behind these worsening conditions, victims can and should take legal action against those responsible.

Hospitals can be held responsible for staff negligence

Medical facilities and hospitals across the nation have become increasingly busy over the last several decades thanks to a growing population. This is just as true in New Jersey cities as it is in larger and more populated areas of the country. Considering the large volume of patients that receive care in these facilities on a daily basis, it is no wonder that hospital mistakes and even negligence occur.

When you stop to think about the massive amount of communication that must transpire between the medical staff it can boggle the mind. Add to that already hectic mix care coordination responsibilities and facility cleanliness and you have a possible recipe for disaster. When it does occur due to honest mistakes or outright negligence, the entire facility can be held responsible. This includes everything from errors made in radiology, lab errors, emergency room mistakes and hospital staff negligence.

Taking action when surgical errors occur

Undergoing any kind of surgical procedure can be frightening, especially when you consider how many surgical errors occur in New Jersey and the rest of the nation. Sadly, many people become victims of surgical errors in the United States each year, often caused by negligent or reckless behavior by the medical staff. All types of surgical errors can affect patients, but some are more common than others are. Here are some of the most common surgical mistakes that occur across the country.

-- Surgery performed on the wrong site-- Leaving surgical instruments or other foreign materials inside the body-- Surgery performed on the wrong patient-- Improper anesthesia delivery-- Improper surgical instrument sanitization techniques-- Post-surgical negligence and complications-- Perforating vital organs during surgery-- Injuring arteries during cardiology procedures-- Performing unnecessary surgical procedures

My doctor didn't order a biopsy. Should he or she have?

The first step in successfully treating a patient for cancer or other serious illnesses is acquiring a correct diagnosis. In most cases, patients can trust their physicians to take all steps necessary to acquire this diagnosis and then create an appropriate treatment plan. However, failure to diagnose medical conditions do still happen. In fact, misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose accurately is one of the most common reasons patients turn to medical malpractice litigation.

While medicine has made many amazing strides throughout its history, it is still an inexact science, which means diagnostic mistakes occur even from dedicated doctors. Despite this, physicians must be held responsible when they fail to abide by industry diagnosing standards, especially when the patient turns out to have cancer. The efficacy of cancer treatment is time-sensitive, meaning a speedy diagnosis is crucial.

Wrongful birth injuries: Their causes and consequences

Injuries to the tiniest of America's citizens -- newborn infants -- is a topic that no one wants to think about. Obstetricians and other medical personnel involved in the birth of babies care about what they do and no doubt work hard to ensure a safe delivery. However, birth injuries do still occur and some of them are caused by error rather than unpreventable circumstances.

Many times, an infant injured during birth will get better with time, experiencing no long-term effects. At the same time, some of these injured infants will never get better and may suffer from developmental delays, permanent physical conditions or even death.

$7.4 Billion Medicaid Recovery

Breslin and Breslin, PA, Donald A. Caminiti, Esq., was one of six law firms selected by the Attorney General of the State of New Jersey to act as special counsel to represent it in its lawsuit against the tobacco industry to recover Medicaid and other health related costs incurred by the state resulting from tobacco related illnesses.