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Many medical facilities throughout Maryland are operated or funded by the federal government. As such, if a patient suffers harm due to incompetent care received in a federal facility, they may be able to assert claims for damages caused by the negligent health care provider pursuant to the Federal Tort Claims Act. While claims against federal facilities and their employees generally must be brought in federal court, medical malpractice claims arising out of state law must be pursued in state court, as discussed in a recent Maryland ruling. If you were injured by the incompetence of a doctor, it is advisable to speak to a knowledgeable Maryland medical malpractice lawyer to evaluate your options.

The Plaintiff’s Harm

It is alleged that the plaintiff was treated at the defendant facility with the defendant doctor for mental health issues. The defendant doctor prescribed the plaintiff medication, which he alleged caused him to suffer migraines, issues concentrating, and bloody urine. Additionally, he asserted that the defendant doctor prescribed him other medication that caused weight gain and blurred vision.

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Mistakes made during labor and delivery can have devastating consequences, and in many instances, the harm suffered is permanent. While no amount of money can compensate for the loss of the ability to lead a healthy life, parents of children who suffer life-altering birth injuries can often recover significant compensation. This was demonstrated recently in a verdict issued by a Baltimore jury, awarding a family almost thirty-five million dollars for harm suffered by an infant shortly after birth. If your child suffered injuries at birth due to the negligence of their treatment providers, you might be owed damages, and you should consult an assertive Maryland medical malpractice lawyer to determine your rights.

The Infant’s Harm

It is reported that the mother delivered the plaintiff infant and his twin brother on August 19, 2007, which was approximately one month before they were due. The twin brother was born without complications, but the plaintiff infant had difficulty breathing after he was delivered. He was apneic as a result of his breathing issues and initially required ventilation via a bag mask valve. He was then able to breathe on his own and was admitted to an intensive care nursery at 5:00 am. Allegedly, he was healthy at that time.

Allegedly, the plaintiff infant suffered an apneic episode fifteen minutes later, however, and began having difficulty breathing. The hospital staff began to try different methods to improve his breathing but did not contact the on-call doctor until 5:40 am when the plaintiff infant’s condition rapidly worsened. He began to turn blue, and his oxygen levels were dangerously low. He ultimately had to be intubated and suffered brain damage, cerebral palsy, and other medical issues, which were caused by the lack of oxygen. Continue Reading

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In Maryland, healthcare providers that provide incompetent treatment can be held accountable for any damages that subsequently arise from their incompetence via medical malpractice claims asserted in state court. Patients pursuing medical malpractice claims against their doctors must comply with the procedural requirements established by Maryland law, however. If they do not, their claims may be dismissed, regardless of whether they are valid. This was demonstrated recently in a Maryland ruling in which the court affirmed the dismissal of the plaintiff’s case due to her failure to comply with the Maryland Health Care Malpractice Claims Act (HCMCA). If you sustained losses due to the carelessness of your doctor, it is smart to confer with an experienced Maryland medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.

The Plaintiff’s Allegations

Allegedly, the plaintiff’s daughter died in December 2017. The medical examiner determined that she died due to Diltiazem intoxication and ruled the death a suicide. Following the decedent’s death, however, the plaintiff found a prescription provided to the decedent by the defendant doctor for a daily dosage of 480 mg of Diltiazem. Thus, the plaintiff filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant, alleging the decedent’s Diltiazem intoxication was provoked by the defendant’s prescription. The defendant moved to dismiss the plaintiff’s complaint on the grounds that she failed to comply with the requirements of the HCMCA prior to pursuing her claims. The trial court granted the defendant’s motion, and the plaintiff filed an appeal.

The Maryland Health Care Malpractice Claims Act

On appeal, the appellate court affirmed the trial court ruling. The appellate court explained that the HCMCA demands that all claims against a health care provider in which the plaintiff seeks damages for a medical injury must be filed with the Health Care Alternative Dispute Resolution Office (HCADRO). Among other things, the HCADRO administers a non-binding arbitration procedure. Pursuant to Maryland law, if a plaintiff files a medical malpractice lawsuit without first filing a claim with the HCMCA, the court must dismiss the case. In the subject action, the plaintiff alleged that the defendants, all of whom were health care providers, negligently treated her daughter, thereby causing her death. Continue Reading

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While it rarely occurs, it is possible for a medical provider that causes a patient harm to commit other grievances as well. As such, a person harmed by medical malpractice may assert numerous causes of action in one lawsuit against the provider that caused their harm, and in many instances, such matters are pursued in the federal courts. Whether the federal courts will exercise jurisdiction over state medical malpractice claims depends on multiple factors, as discussed in a recent Maryland ruling in which the court ultimately dismissed the plaintiff’s case in its entirety. If you were harmed by a negligent healthcare provider, you have the right to seek damages for your losses, and you should speak to a skilled Maryland medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.

Procedural History of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff was housed in a federal facility when he sustained an injury to his left hand. He sought treatment for his injury from a nurse in the facility. He was diagnosed with a “boxer’s fracture” and treated with an arm sling, a wrap, and a splint. At some point, he refractured his finger. He alleges that after his second fracture, he did not receive pain medication or a wrap to stabilize his finger for three weeks.

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The medical care offered to people who are housed in federal facilities, unfortunately, is often inadequate. People who sustain injuries due to such incompetent care have the right to pursue claims against the parties responsible for their harm, however. In many instances, such claims will arise under both state and federal law. While a plaintiff is permitted to pursue state law medical malpractice claims and allegations that the defendant violated their civil rights in one lawsuit, there are often practical challenges with asserting both claims in one case. This was demonstrated recently in an opinion issued by a Maryland court in a matter in which it dismissed the plaintiff’s federal complaint, which included medical malpractice claims. If you were injured by a reckless healthcare provider, you might be owed compensation, and it is in your best interest to confer with a Maryland medical malpractice lawyer regarding your potential claims.

The Facts of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff was housed in a facility owned by the defendant. He alleged that during his stay, he received inadequate medical care for his anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. He subsequently filed a pro se federal lawsuit against the defendant, arguing his civil rights were violated. The plaintiff’s complaint also asserted medical negligence claims that arose out of state law. The defendant moved to dismiss the plaintiff’s case in its entirety. After reviewing the complaint, the defendant’s motion, and the plaintiff’s response, the court found in favor of the defendant and dismissed the plaintiff’s claims.

Medical Malpractice Claims Asserted in Federal Lawsuits

While the court discussed the factual sufficiency of the plaintiff’s federal claims, it did not do so for the plaintiff’s medical malpractice claims. Instead, it merely declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over them due to the fact that it dismissed all claims over which it has original jurisdiction. The court noted that the claims were not dismissed with prejudice, and therefore, the plaintiff could pursue them in state court if he so pleased. Continue Reading

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Notwithstanding claims asserted under the Federal Tort Claims Act, medical malpractice claims are typically pursued in state court. In some instances, however, a plaintiff will set forth claims that sound in medical malpractice in a lawsuit that is filed in federal court and largely asserts federal claims. While the federal courts generally are permitted to exercise jurisdiction over state medical malpractice claims, they typically decline to do so. This was illustrated in a recent case in which the court dismissed the plaintiff’s lawsuit, which included both federal claims and state medical malpractice claims in its entirety. If you suffered harm due to inadequate medical care, you might be able to pursue claims for damages from your provider, and you should consult a Maryland medical malpractice attorney to assess your options for seeking compensation.

The Facts of the Case

It is reported that while the plaintiff was staying in a long-term facility operated by the defendant, he sustained a bladder and urinary tract infection. He subsequently suffered complications due to the infection and had to be hospitalized due to blood clots in his bladder. He ultimately filed a lawsuit against the defendant, asserting multiple federal claims, as well as state medical malpractice claims. The defendant moved to dismiss the complaint in its entirety, arguing that the plaintiff failed to set forth facts, that if proven, would allow him to recover under any theory of liability. The court granted the defendant’s motion.

A Federal Court’s Jurisdiction Over Medical Malpractice Claims

In dismissing the plaintiff’s complaint, the court expressly declined to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over his medical negligence allegations. The court explained that, pursuant to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a district court could decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over a state law claim if it has dismissed all of the related claims over which it had original jurisdiction. Continue Reading

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Some people harmed by incompetent medical care wish to seek compensation from their providers but are reluctant to hire an attorney due to misapprehensions regarding the cost of legal representation. Medical malpractice cases are typically complex, however, and involve an intricate interplay of legal and factual issues. As such, people who attempt to pursue medical malpractice claims without the assistance of an attorney may unknowingly fail to take the actions necessary to preserve their rights. This was demonstrated in a recent Maryland opinion issued in a case in which the plaintiff’s convoluted complaint that included medical malpractice claims and other assertions was ultimately dismissed. If you were injured due to the reckless acts of a physician, it is in your best interest to meet with a Maryland medical malpractice lawyer to discuss your potential claims.

Factual and Procedural Background of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff was hospitalized, after which he was transferred to the defendant’s facility, a treatment center that offered patients physical rehabilitation and medical services. He was admitted to the facility for approximately six months. He was then involuntarily discharged for failing to make payments for services rendered by the defendant. He subsequently filed a pro se lawsuit against the defendant, asserting numerous claims sounding in civil rights violations, discrimination, and medical malpractice. The defendant moved to dismiss the plaintiff’s claims, arguing that he failed to set forth allegations sufficient to establish any plausible claim for relief. Alternatively, the defendant argued that two of the plaintiff’s claims, which sounded in malpractice, must be dismissed because he did not exhaust his administrative procedures as required under the Maryland Health Care Malpractice Claims Act.

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Many medical facilities are funded and operated by the federal government. Patients who suffer harm due to incompetent care rendered in such a facility may be able to recover damages, but they typically must comply with the requirements imposed by the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), as their claims will ultimately be pursued against the federal government. The duties that arise out of the FTCA are strictly construed, and the failure to abide by such obligations may be fatal to a plaintiff’s claim. This was demonstrated in a recent opinion issued by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in which the court affirmed the dismissal of the plaintiff’s medical malpractice case. If you suffered harm due to the negligence of a health care provider, it is sensible to consult a Maryland medical malpractice lawyer promptly to prevent the inadvertent waiver of your right to recover damages.

The Facts of the Case

Reportedly, the decedent underwent treatment at a federally funded hospital. He subsequently died due to complications from liver cancer. The plaintiff, the decedent’s wife, filed a lawsuit against the federal government, seeking damages for the decedent’s death, pursuant to the FTCA. The plaintiff alleged, in part, that the defendant’s doctors negligently failed to screen the decedent for liver cancer. The defendant moved for summary judgment, arguing that the plaintiff’s claims were barred by the applicable statute of limitations. The court granted the motion, and the plaintiff appealed.

Notice Requirements Under the FTCA

After reviewing the pleadings and evidence of record, the appellate court affirmed the trial court ruling. The court explained that absent a waiver, the United States is shielded from liability in civil lawsuits via sovereign immunity. The FTCA acts as a waiver of such immunity but only allows parties to pursue claims against the government if they comply with certain terms and conditions.

While the government consents to suits seeking damages for the harm caused by its employees while acting in the scope of their employment, such claims are barred unless they are presented to the appropriate federal agency, in writing, within two years of the date when the claim accrues.  The court elaborated that a claim accrues when the plaintiff either knows or reasonably should know of both the harm suffered and the cause of the harm. In the subject case, the trial court determined that the plaintiff’s claims accrued in 2011, but she failed to file her administrative tort claim until 2014. Thus, her claims were barred by the statute of limitations. Continue Reading

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Many parents are apprehensive about the births of their children. While a variety of concerns may cause expectant parents anxiety, they rarely anticipate that they will lose their child due to the incompetence of their treatment providers. Unfortunately, some fetuses suffer harm before birth that is ultimately fatal, and in many cases, such injuries are caused by the recklessness of healthcare professionals. Parents who suffer the loss of their children at birth can often recover substantial damages, as demonstrated in a recent wrongful death verdict issued in a birth injury case in Baltimore. If your child suffered harm at birth due to the carelessness of a medical provider, it is in your best interest to speak to a knowledgeable Maryland birth injury lawyer as soon as possible to avoid waiving your right to seek redress.

The Plaintiff’s Allegations

It is reported that the mother arrived at the defendant hospital in active labor and at full term shortly after midnight on July 19, 2015. Four hours later, she began receiving doses of the hormone oxytocin to help her deliver. The fetus first displayed signs of cardiac distress around 9:00 am when a sensor indicated a heart rate of 160 beats per minute. The defendant directed the staff not to take any action, however.

According to the complaint, the mother began complaining of severe abdominal pain three and a half hours later. She was not taken to the operating room until 2:00 pm, though, at which time the defendant obstetrician-gynecologist performed an emergency cesarean section. Tragically, the baby was born with no detectable heart rate and resuscitation attempts were ineffective. In February 2018, the parents filed a wrongful death case against the hospital and the obstetrician-gynecologist. Continue Reading

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Attorneys have a duty to advocate on behalf of their clients. Thus, if an attorney and their client disagree as to how to litigate a matter or an attorney does not feel it can adequately represent a client’s interests, it may withdraw from the case. In doing so, however, the attorney must comply with certain procedural rules; otherwise, it may adversely affect their client’s rights. In a ruling recently set forth in a medical malpractice case, a court explained a plaintiff’s recourse when an attorney withdraws from a case without following proper procedure. If you were harmed by medical negligence, it is smart to consult a skillful Maryland medical malpractice lawyer to assess your options for seeking compensation.

Procedural History of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff sought treatment with the defendant for anorectal health issues. The defendant ultimately performed surgery on the plaintiff to alleviate his symptoms. The plaintiff asserts the defendant did not perform the procedure properly, causing him to suffer permanent harm, physical and emotional suffering and pain, and other damages. He filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant but failed to comply with the scheduling order.

Allegedly, after numerous discovery delays, the defendant moved for sanctions. The plaintiff’s attorney took responsibility for the delays but shortly thereafter moved to withdraw from the case. The court granted the motion but refused the plaintiff’s subsequent motion to extend discovery deadlines. The defendant then filed a motion to dismiss the case, and the court granted the motion. The plaintiff appealed. Continue Reading

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