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Medical Malpractice

CRE Superbug Outbreak in Los Angeles

- Paul Zuckerman

The attorneys at Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley have been closely watching the reports concerning the superbug outbreak at the Ronal Regan Medical Center here in Los Angeles. We are actively preparing to assist clients with their needs for hospital negligence claims. Please see our page for more information. Check our blog soon for more information.

Los Angeles Super Bug Outbreak – Hospital Malpractice?

- Paul Zuckerman

People trust hospitals to help them regain their health, and doctors take oaths to do no harm. In too many cases, though, patients actually become sicker due to mistake or oversights by medical professionals. Since October 2014, there have been seven confirmed cases and two deaths linked to a deadly drug-resistant bacteria at UCLA’s Ronald Reagan Medical Center in Los Angeles. As many as 180 people may have been exposed through the use of contaminated medical equipment.

TMRSA Superbug Los Angeles Attorneyhe super bug at the center of this Los Angeles outbreak was spread through the use of special endoscopes. UCLA Medical Center spokesmen claim they were cleaned according to manufacturer protocol, but those procedures may not have been thorough enough, to eliminate all bacteria.
This isn’t the first time a super bug has been spread through a contaminated reusable medical instrument. In fact, as many as 150 patients have been affected in a half dozen similar outbreaks in hospitals across the country in only the last three years. Between 2012 and 2014, 32 patients were affected and eleven died from resistant infections at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle. That outbreak was traced back to the same endoscopes as the UCLA outbreak.

The Los Angeles infections are far from an isolated incident. Consumer activist groups and patients alike are questioning why hospitals and medical device manufacturers aren’t doing more to protect patients. While it has yet to be shown if this current super bug outbreak is due to hospital negligence or the fault of the manufacturer’s cleaning protocol, there are some signs that the hospital may not have recognized the danger as soon as they could have and made moves to protect patients from being exposed.

If you were notified that you may have been exposed to the bacteria, are experiencing CRE super bug symptoms, or have been diagnosed with a hospital-acquired drug resistant infection, you may be curious if hiring and attorney and suing hospital for negligence is possible. A hospital negligence lawyer can help you discover the answer. In some cases, filing a lawsuit against a hospital or suing a hospital for wrongful death is the only way to recover financially and emotionally after being the victim of hospital malpractice.

Carpenter Zuckerman & Rowley, LLP is one of the largest law firms dedicated exclusively to handling medical malpractice and wrongful death claims in the Los Angeles area. Contact us today for a free initial consultation. (213) 514-8332

California Medical Malpractice Cap May Increase

- Paul Zuckerman

The California legislature is proposing to raise the cap on medical malpractice pain and suffering awards. Currently, the cap is at $250,000 – an amount set back in 1975. In the new proposal – named Proposition 46 – the cap would be raised to $1.1 million, a figure in keeping with inflation.

Medical malpractice is costly. In 2013, a total of $3.6 billion was paid out due to medical malpractice lawsuits. California was in the top five states for most payouts with a total of $222,926,200.

When a suit has been brought against a healthcare provider, the damages requested are not solely for the past and present costs of the physical injury. They can also include:

  • Past, present, and future lost wages
  • Past, present, and future inability to earn a living
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of consortium for a spouse
  • Loss of support for a child
  • Future medical bills

If the increased cap passes, victims of a healthcare provider’s negligence will be able to recover more for their injuries. California medical malpractice payouts could increase as a result.

The care does not have to be provided by a doctor for a malpractice suit to be brought. Medical malpractice covers actions by a physician, nurse practitioner, pharmacist, hospital, or other healthcare professional. For a suit to be valid, the professional must have failed to care for the patient in accordance with the applicable standard of care.

A healthcare provider’s negligence often leads to other injuries, a worsening of the condition that was being treated and also lead to death. When this occurs, it is important to consult an attorney experienced with medical malpractice cases. You, or your loved ones, may be entitled to compensation.

At Carpenter, Zuckerman, & Rowley, LLP we have a team of professional personal injury attorneys who are able to aggressively litigate medical malpractice claims. We have decades of combined experience advocating for our clients when a healthcare provider has been negligent in treating them.

Our attorneys, work diligently in negotiating settlements that are more than adequate to help our clients in their time of need. For a free consultation, we welcome your call to our Los Angeles office at 213-514-8332.

What Myths Surround Many California Medical Malpractice Cases?

- Paul Zuckerman

Medical Malpractice AttorneysMedical malpractice often results in serious injuries or the worsening of an already serious medical condition. Because of the life-altering injuries caused by medical professionals’ negligence, victims must often seek large amounts of compensation for their losses in order to recover or deal with their injuries for months, years, or the remainder of their life.

As a result, many myths surroundSouthern California medical malpractice cases and the claims filed by victims, many of which are spread by insurance companies and those on the side of the medical community. Often, these myths will influence a jury in a case or discourage a victim from seeking proper compensation for his or her losses. It is important to understand these myths as what the truth really is.

  • Lawsuits drive doctors out of business. In reality, the compensation for injured parties is paid by insurance companies and hospitals, not the doctor. Only a handful of doctors go out of business due to medical malpractice, mostly because of their legal violations.
  • Lawsuits drive up medical costs. Increases in insurance costs have been found to not be based on an increase in lawsuits, but a change in the economy. As a whole, the payments for malpractice compensation reach millions of dollars, but it is only a small fraction of the billions spent in the field every year.
  • Plaintiffs seek unreasonably high compensation. Not all malpractice suits seek millions of dollars in compensation, but those that do involve patients who suffer long-term or permanent disabilities. These injuries cost millions over the years for rehabilitation and day-to-day medical care, which victims and families cannot pay on their own. Undeserving claims are quickly stopped before trial or do not win.

Medical malpractice injuries require proper care and compensation for dealing with the complications that arise, but being successful in the search can be very difficult without the right representation. At Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley, our San Diego medical malpractice attorneys understand your needs and are determined to find you the compensation you need to move forward in life. For a consultation on your case and to learn more about how we can help you hold negligent parties legally responsible, call 213-514-8332.

Study Finds Wide Range in C-Section Usage between Hospitals

- Paul Zuckerman

Medical Malpractice LawyersA new study from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health has found that cesarean birth delivery usage can range from as low as seven percent to as high as 70 percent in hospitals across the country. As reported by ABC News, this large degree of difference is far too great to be due to case mixes, but rather may be a quality of care problem.

The study was done by analyzing inpatient claims from 593 hospitals across the country that had performed at least 100 deliveries in 2009. The mean rate that was found for c-sections was 33 percent. Additionally, even lower risk pregnancies had c-section usage ranging from two to 37 percent in various hospitals.

Practice patterns were found to be the most likely cause of variation, rather than the requests of mothers. Researchers suggested that policy interventions should focus on c-section practices. Additionally, better triage in maternity to determine the best process and monitoring of delivery procedures could help better regulate the amount of cesareans performed.

Both overuse and underuse of c-section delivery can cause harm for patients. A higher risk of infection may occur, emergency hysterectomies could be needed, and the baby may have a greater risk of respiratory distress, asphyxia, and pulmonary disorder when the incorrect procedure is chosen.

Whatever a mother and infant’s needs may be, determining the correct procedure is vital for ensuring health and well-being during delivery. Unfortunately, medical errors may occur in judging what is best or completing the procedure. If your child has been harmed due to a hospital staff’s negligent actions, a Beverly Hills birth injury lawyerwith Carpenter, Zuckerman & Rowley has both the resources and experience needed to represent you in the search for compensation. Do not let another day pass without knowing your complete rights as a victim, call us at 213-514-8332.