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obstetricianUnfortunately, medical malpractice injures a number of patients in Maryland and across the country each year. In the most serious cases, medical mistakes can lead to death. While all medical professionals are capable of making mistakes, some specialties, such as OB/GYNs, are more susceptible to lawsuits than others. If you or someone close to you has been harmed by an OB/GYN’s error, you should reach out to a skilled Baltimore obstetrician malpractice attorney who can assess the merits of your case. At Arfaa Law Group, we understand the nuances of this area of the law and can protect your rights at every step of the way.

A recent study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association found that medical malpractice lawsuits are declining in the United States, but the average payment is rising. The objective of the study was to characterize paid malpractice claims by specialty. According to the report, the rate of malpractice claims went down more than 50 percent between 1992 and 2014. However, if you are a neurosurgeon or an OB/GYN, you still face a high risk of being sued, despite the overall decline in malpractice claims. Also notable in the study is the finding that the average malpractice payment has risen by almost 25 percent in inflation-adjusted dollars since the early 1990s. In fact, approximately one in 14 claims pay out over a million dollars. For neurosurgeons and OB/GYNs, these high payouts happen in almost one out of eight claims.

Not every adverse outcome is a result of medical malpractice in Maryland. Instead, a medical malpractice claim is a claim of negligence committed by a medical professional, such as a physician, nurse, dentist, chiropractor, technician, hospital, or hospital staff. Medical malpractice occurs when a patient is injured or killed because a medical professional failed to use the level of care and caution that another medical professional in the same specialty would have used in the same or similar circumstances. A jury will determine if a medical professional’s actions were negligent by considering the testimony of experts, usually other medical professionals in the same specialty, who will testify whether they believe the defendant followed standard medical practices or deviated from the accepted standard of care.

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medicineUnfortunately, medical mistakes are common in Maryland and throughout the United States. OBGYN errors can have serious consequences for a patient’s health. If you or your loved one has been injured by an OBGYN’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your harm. At Arfaa Law Group, we can investigate the merits of your case and provide you with an honest assessment of your claim.

A Maryland jury decided in favor of a woman who developed lung cancer after her gynecologist failed to follow up on the results of a hysterectomy properly. Specifically, the gynecologist failed to share with the patient a pathologist’s warnings in 2011 that the uterine tumors she discovered during the hysterectomy were potentially malignant. The pathologist had recommended close clinical follow-up treatment, but the OBGYN took no steps to institute a close clinical follow-up of the surgical pathology results.

In 2014, the patient underwent medical tests that revealed she had metastatic lung cancer that likely originated in the uterus, according to the complaint. The patient currently suffers from stage-4 sarcoma in her lungs.

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surgerySurgery, whether minor or major, is always daunting for a patient and his or her family. If you or someone you love has been injured by a medical professional at an ambulatory surgery center (ASC), you need to speak to a skilled Baltimore surgical malpractice attorney who can assess the merits of your case. At Arfaa Law Group, we have the experience to handle your case with the compassion and attention it deserves.

ASCs, also known as outpatient surgery centers or same day surgery centers, are health care facilities where surgical procedures not requiring an overnight hospital stay are performed. For patients, an ASC can be a more convenient and less costly alternative to a hospital. In recent years, ASCs have popped up everywhere. In fact, approximately 25 million surgical procedures are performed at ASCs each year, rather than at acute care hospitals.

Hospitals in Maryland and across the United States have to follow strict regulations. There is a standard process and procedure in place for virtually everything to minimize the risk of harm to patients. ASCs, on the other hand, are independently owned and managed. In some cases, the procedures at ASCs are not thorough enough and can lead to serious issues, such as:

  • Failure to sterilize equipment properly;
  • Premature discharge of a patient;
  • Lack of oversight;
  • Lack of accreditation;
  • Poor documentation of safety procedures; or
  • Failure to obtain informed consent for surgeries.

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therapyPatients who seek the help of psychiatrists expect to receive competent care. In fact, these medical professionals are trusted with the task of helping their patients deal and cope with a wide range of mental health issues. Unfortunately, some patients not only deal with psychiatrist neglect but also deal with abuse. If you or someone close to you has suffered due to psychiatric malpractice, we can help. At Arfaa Law Group, you can rest assured that our Maryland psychiatric malpractice lawyers understand how to navigate these complex medical malpractice claims.

Psychiatry is the branch of medicine that diagnoses and treats mental disorders. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 1 in 5 adults (18.5 percent of all adults) in the United States experience mental illness in a given year. Additionally, 1 in 25 adults in the U.S. (4 percent of all adults) experience a serious mental illness in a given year that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities. Like any other type of doctor, psychiatrists can be negligent as well. Some common forms of psychiatric malpractice include:

  • Failure to properly diagnose a patient;
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cancerCancer is the dreaded ‘c’ word that no patient wants to hear. If caught early enough, patients can often beat cancer and resume their normal lives. If it is not diagnosed in a timely manner, however, the consequences can be devastating. If you or someone close to you was harmed due to a physician’s failure to diagnose cancer, it is imperative to reach out to a skilled Baltimore misdiagnosis attorney who can assess the merits of your case.

A Baltimore jury recently awarded a hefty damages sum to the family of a man who died of colon cancer after his primary care physician failed to follow up on an unexplained case of anemia, which the family claims could have led to an earlier cancer diagnosis. The 55-year-old patient died from colon cancer 15 months after it was finally diagnosed.

The case at hand would be considered a ‘failure to diagnose’ case. A failure to diagnose is when a doctor misses the connection between a patient’s symptoms and their medical condition. The result is that no diagnosis is made, and the patient takes no course of treatment. A physician’s failure to diagnose can lead to further injuries and even death to a patient. According to a report released by the Institute of Medicine, most Americans will get a late or wrong diagnosis at least once in their lives.

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wheelchairIf you have been injured in a nursing home facility or rehabilitation center, it is important to reach out to a skilled Baltimore nursing malpractice attorney as soon as possible. Even if at first glance, your case does not seem like a medical malpractice claim – the reality is that it might be. If it is a medical malpractice claim, you need to be prepared to follow a variety of procedural guidelines. At Arfaa Law Group, we understand the nuances of this area of the law and can put our knowledge to use in your case.

The Maryland Court of Appeals granted review in a number of cases earlier this year. One of these cases addresses the issue of what constitutes an allegation of medical malpractice that invokes the Maryland Health Claims Act.

In the case at hand, the plaintiff was admitted to the nursing rehabilitation center to be treated for rehabilitation after back surgery. Two days later, the plaintiff’s mattress came loose from her bed and came sliding off the bed frame, causing the plaintiff to fall onto the floor. The rehabilitation center used a mechanical lift to put the woman back in bed, since the center is a ‘no lift’ facility. Unfortunately, the nurse who was using the mechanical lift used it incorrectly and ended up releasing the net too soon, causing the patient to drop to the floor.

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hospital

When you visit a medical professional, you expect to receive competent care. While we expect comprehensive care, the reality is that many patients are being overtreated, meaning they are receiving tests and treatments that they do not actually need. If you or someone close to you has suffered an injury due to a medical professional’s overtreatment, you need to reach out to a skilled Baltimore medical negligence attorney as soon as possible. At Arfaa Law Group, we can help you assess the case and determine whether a lawsuit is the right option for you.

A recent study published in PLUS ONE has shed light on just how big the problem of overtreatment is in the United States. According to the report, at least 15 to 30 percent of overall medical care is unnecessary, said most of the 2,100 physicians who responded to a survey conducted by researchers from Johns Hopkins and Harvard Medical Schools. The data also shows that about 22 percent of prescription medication, 25 percent of tests, and 11 percent of procedures that are given are not needed. For example, not every patient with back pain needs an x-ray, but an x-ray is very often ordered.

An overwhelming majority of the physicians who were interviewed for the study cited fear of litigation as the top reason for overtreatment, followed by patient pressure and difficulty assessing prior medical records. While physicians think they are being extra cautious by overtreating, the reality is that overtreatment can be harmful for patients and give rise to medical malpractice claims as well. For example, prescribing a patient with a cough or cold antibiotics when they do not actually need them might be administering too strong a medication for the problem at hand, and it could ultimately harm the patient, due to other side effects associated with those antibiotics.

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doctorIf you or someone close to you has been hurt because of a medical professional’s carelessness, error, or wrongdoing, our diligent Baltimore health care malpractice attorneys can help. At Arfaa Law Group, we understand the nuances of this area of the law and can put our knowledge to use in your case. We are here to answer your questions and address your concerns at every step of the way.

Medical malpractice cases in Maryland and across the United States are about establishing fault on the part of a medical professional. In litigation, there are many tactics that the plaintiff and defense can use to build their case. The Court of Appeals of Maryland, Maryland’s highest court, recently had to decide if evidence regarding the negligence of several non-parties should have been admitted at trial. The court ultimately held that the negligence of the non-parties was properly admitted because it was essential to give the defendant physician a fair trial. Put another way, the defendant, who was generally denying malpractice in a claim, could present evidence of a non-party’s negligence and causation as an affirmative defense.

In the case at hand, a man died as a result of a fatal stroke that he suffered in 2010. The man’s estate and widow filed a medical malpractice claim against the defendant radiologist and three subsequent treating physicians, claiming that their negligence led to the man suffering the stroke. However, before the trial, each of the other named defendants settled the case outside court. Thus, the case was only against one remaining defendant.

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wardUnfortunately, medical malpractice is common in Maryland and throughout the United States. If you were injured or you lost a loved one due to a medical professional’s error in a hospital setting, you may be able to seek compensation for your harm. At Arfaa Law Group, our seasoned Baltimore hospital malpractice attorney will thoroughly review the facts of your case and determine the viability of your claim.

The University of Maryland Medical Center, one of the nation’s oldest teaching hospitals, was recently found liable for medical malpractice in a case in which a patient was given a drug that destroyed his colon and ultimately led to his death.

The family of the deceased patient filed a claim against the hospital to seek damages for the death. The facts of the case are as follows. The patient was admitted to the hospital for kidney issues, and, during the treatment, he developed potassium levels that physicians noted were too high. To counteract the high potassium levels, physicians administered the drug Kayexalate.

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waiting roomIf you or someone close to you has been harmed by a physician’s negligence in a hospital setting, we can help. At Arfaa Law Group, our Baltimore hospital negligence attorneys understand how to navigate these types of claims and can put our knowledge to use in your case. You can rest assured that we will scrutinize the facts of your case and come up with a strategy to effectively respond to any motions for summary judgment that you may face in the process.

Under Maryland law, a party is entitled to summary judgment only when there is “no genuine issue as to any material fact, and the moving party is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Put another way, the proponent of summary judgment must make a prima facie showing of their entitlement to summary judgment as a matter of law by demonstrating the absence of any material issues of fact in the case. Essentially, summary judgment is appropriate when the moving party establishes that the opposing party cannot win, even if all credibility conflicts are resolved in the opposing party’s favor. For instance, if a jurisdiction requires the plaintiff in a medical malpractice claim to produce an expert witness to establish the case, summary judgment may be proper if a plaintiff cannot produce a qualified expert.

This is actually what happened in the case of Hannon, et al. v. Mercy Medical Center, in which the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland affirmed the trial court granting summary judgment to the defendants in a Maryland medical malpractice case, prior to the scheduled trial, holding that the plaintiff failed to secure a medical expert to testify on their behalf during trial. This was sufficient reason for the trial court to grant the defendant’s motion for summary judgment.