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People harmed by the incompetence of medical professionals have the right to seek damages via malpractice lawsuits. The right is not boundless, however, as a person can generally only pursue claims against another party one time, regardless of the merits of the underlying allegations. This rule was explained in a recent Maryland opinion in which the court dismissed a plaintiff’s medical malpractice lawsuit, as it was the fourth case he filed against the defendant. If you were harmed by medical negligence, you might be able to recover compensation from your treatment providers, and it is advisable to confer with a knowledgeable Maryland medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.

The Plaintiff’s Care

It is reported that the plaintiff visited the defendant facility in June 2016 with complaints of pain and numbness in his left leg. He was examined, and as no abnormalities were found, he was discharged with a diagnosis of a muscle sprain. He returned two weeks later with similar complaints and was again evaluated and released. He went back to the defendant facility again nine days later. At that time, his complaints included cold feet. The treating physician did not check his pulse or temperature in his legs but determined the plaintiff’s symptoms were caused by the medication he was taking.

Allegedly, in early July, one month after his initial visit, the plaintiff experienced severe pain in his left leg. Testing revealed he was suffering from blood clots in his leg, and he was transferred to another hospital where his leg was amputated. The plaintiff then filed four different lawsuits against the defendant, alleging medical malpractice claims. The first two cases were dismissed, and the defendant filed an answer in the third case, which was filed in a Maryland state court and moved to dismiss the fourth, which was filed in a federal district court. Continue Reading

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Drownings cause thousands of deaths per year, and it is critical that people suspected of drowning receive immediate medical care. Typically, such care is rendered by an emergency medical service provider. If the services offered are inadequate, it can, unfortunately, lead to death, but in many cases, it does not constitute grounds for recovery under medical malpractice or wrongful death claim. In a recent Maryland opinion, the court explained what a plaintiff must prove to establish the liability of an EMS provider in a case in which the plaintiff’s decedent died after the defendant’s resuscitation attempts failed. If you lost a loved one due to EMT negligence, you could be owed compensation, and you should speak to a Maryland medical malpractice attorney.

The Decedent’s Death

It is reported that the decedent was taking part in a SWAT aquatic training exercise in Baltimore County. Prior to the training, he completed a series of exercises that were physically demanding, both in and out of the pool. Near the end of the training, the decedent slipped below the surface of the water for ten seconds and lost consciousness. He was removed from the pool, and medics who worked for the defendant county provided him with medical treatment and attempted to resuscitate him.

Allegedly, he was transported to a hospital, where he later died. The plaintiff filed numerous claims against the defendant, including wrongful death and negligence claims arising out of the care rendered by the EMTs. In response, the defendants filed a motion to dismiss the claims. Continue Reading

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Many medical facilities throughout Maryland are funded by the federal government. A person who suffers harm due to incompetent medical care at a federal facility, therefore, will likely file any medical malpractice claims in federal court naming the federal government as the defendant. Plaintiffs pursuing claims for medical negligence in the federal arena must nonetheless comply with Maryland’s requirements regarding malpractice claims, otherwise they may waive the right to recover damages, as demonstrated in a recent opinion issued by a Maryland court. If you were harmed by inadequate medical treatment in a federal facility, it is in your best interest to speak to a skillful Maryland medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible.

The Plaintiff’s Care

It is reported that the plaintiff sought treatment at a hospital operated by the defendant federal government for a pilonidal cyst. He underwent a procedure to remove the cyst that was performed by the defendant’s physicians, after which he suffered ongoing discomfort and pain. He then filed an administrative claim with the defendant in which he stated his allegations regarding his negligent care. The defendant denied his claim, and he filed a lawsuit against the defendant under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), asserting medical negligence claims.

It is alleged that the defendant filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that the court did not have subject matter jurisdiction because the plaintiff failed to comply with Maryland’s statutory requirements for pursuing a medical negligence claim. The court agreed and ultimately dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint. Continue Reading

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Doctors tending to expectant mothers have a duty to advise them of treatment risks and alternatives. If they do not, and a mother makes an uninformed decision during delivery, it can result in a tragic birth injury that causes permanent impairment. If a mother is adequately advised of the potential harm a course of care poses but chooses to proceed with that plan regardless, though, the mother may be denied damages. This was demonstrated in a recent Maryland ruling in which an appellate court reversed a jury’s award in a birth injury case, which was the largest medical malpractice award in the United States to date. If your child sustained harm at birth, it is advisable to meet with an experienced Maryland birth injury attorney about your rights.

The Plaintiff’s Care

It is reported that the plaintiff mother, who was 16-years-old and 25 weeks pregnant, presented to the defendant hospital with severe eclampsia and other complications. She met with a team of doctors who advised her of treatment options and their potential risks. Specifically, they told her she could terminate her pregnancy, undergo cesarean delivery, or an induction for a vaginal delivery. She advised the doctors that she did not want to undergo a cesarean delivery to save the baby, even if there were signs of distress, but was otherwise unsure of how to proceed. She ultimately chose to undergo induction.

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In medical malpractice lawsuits, medical documents and images detailing the plaintiff’s treatment are essential to proving liability. As such, if a defendant refuses to produce certain records, it can greatly impair a plaintiff’s ability to present a compelling case. In some instances, though, a defendant is permitted to withhold evidence, such as when the documents sought are privileged. In a recent opinion, a Maryland court discussed medical peer review privilege in a case arising out of alleged medical negligence during a surgical procedure. If you or a loved one suffered injuries due to a careless treatment provider, you may have a viable claim for compensation, and it is in your best interest to speak to a Maryland medical malpractice lawyer about your options.

The Procedural History

It is reported that the plaintiff’s minor son underwent a surgical procedure that was performed by physicians at a military medical center funded by the defendant, the federal government. He was deprived of oxygen during the surgery and suffered a permanent brain injury and seizure disorder. The plaintiff then filed a lawsuit against the defendant, alleging claims of medical negligence and lack of informed consent.

It is alleged that during the course of discovery, the plaintiff sought certain medical records from the defendant, which it refused to produce, citing privilege under the medical quality assurance statute. The plaintiff objected to the defendant’s claims of privilege and filed a motion to compel the documents. The court then conducted an in camera review of the requested documents and ultimately ruled in favor of the defendant.   Continue Reading

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Paramedics and EMTs often provide people suffering from critical health issues with medical assistance. Emergency medical professionals have broad immunity under Maryland law and typically can only be held liable for harm suffered by people in their care in cases involving gross negligence. In a recent Maryland opinion, a court explained what constitutes gross negligence and what a plaintiff must establish to recover damages from a paramedic in a case in which the plaintiff fell and broke her leg while walking to an ambulance. If you were injured while being treated by a paramedic, you could be owed damages, and it is advisable to talk to an attorney to discuss your possible claims.

The Plaintiff’s Harm

It is alleged that the plaintiff suffered an acute psychiatric incident that caused her to threaten suicide. Her caregiver called 911, and the defendant dispatched an ambulance to the plaintiff’s residence. Upon arrival, the paramedics evaluated the plaintiff and determined that she should be taken to a hospital for further treatment. When the plaintiff got to the hospital, she exited the ambulance without assistance and twisted her ankle, and fell.

Reportedly, the plaintiff suffered a fibula fracture in the fall and subsequently filed a lawsuit against the defendant, alleging that the negligence of the paramedics that tended to her ultimately led to her harm. The defendant moved to dismiss the plaintiff’s claims, arguing that numerous statutes rendered it immune. The trial court granted the defendant’s motion, and the plaintiff appealed.    Continue Reading

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Typically, people suffering from critical medical issues will visit an emergency department of a hospital. Medical professionals working in emergency departments triage patients according to the severity of their complaints, and it is unfortunately not uncommon for a patient to have to wait for an extended period of time prior to receiving treatment. Delays in treatment, absent some degree of harm, do not typically constitute medical negligence, as was discussed in a recent ruling in which the court dismissed the plaintiff’s claims against a hospital due to a lack of damages. If you suffered harm because of inadequate care in an emergency room, it is in your best interest to speak to a lawyer about your rights.

The Plaintiff’s Care

Allegedly, the plaintiff visited the emergency department of the defendant hospital with complaints of dizziness and a rapid heartbeat and breathing. He was checked in, and shortly thereafter, a nurse took his vital signs. He was then assessed by a doctor and underwent a series of diagnostic exams. After an extended wait, a second doctor advised the plaintiff he was being discharged. He was sent home without a diagnosis half an hour later. The plaintiff then filed a lawsuit against the defendant, alleging in part that the defendant committed medical negligence by failing to properly treat the plaintiff. The defendant filed a motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s claims, which the court ultimately granted.

Demonstrating Medical Negligence

Upon review, the court found that the plaintiff’s medical negligence claim was insubstantial, in that the plaintiff failed to allege the facts necessary to recover under the applicable laws. Specifically, the court noted that in order to establish the defendant’s negligence, the plaintiff must demonstrate that the defendant owed a duty of care to the plaintiff, the defendant’s behavior constituted a breach of the duty owed and that damages to the plaintiff’s interests were proximately caused by the defendant’s breach. The court elaborated that proving the defendant’s negligence would require the plaintiff to establish the standard of care by showing what a reasonably prudent physician practicing in the same specialty as the defendant would have done in the same or similar circumstances. Continue Reading

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Defendants in medical malpractice cases usually will not admit liability. Instead, in many instances, they will seek to have the claims against them dismissed. To avoid dismissal, a plaintiff must set forth certain factual allegations in the initial pleading and then obtain the evidence needed to support those assertions via discovery. A plaintiff in a medical malpractice case that files a complaint that meets the level of specificity required to pursue claims, though, should be permitted to engage in discovery before the court considers dismissing his or her case. This was demonstrated in a recent Maryland ruling, in which the defendant ophthalmologist asked the court to grant summary judgment before any meaningful discovery had been conducted. If you were harmed by a negligent ophthalmologist, it is prudent to speak to a skilled Maryland medical malpractice attorney to discuss your potential claims.

The Plaintiff’s Claims

It is alleged that the defendant ophthalmologist diagnosed the plaintiff with a cataract in his right eye, which was described as mature. Initially, the defendant recommended surgical removal of the cataract, but he later determined that the plaintiff was not an appropriate surgical candidate. The plaintiff sought treatment over the next year but did not have another appointment until approximately fourteen months after his initial diagnosis. He had numerous treatment appointments over the next year and a half, during which the vision in his right eye decreased. At each appointment, the defendant advised he was not a surgical candidate.

Reportedly, he then underwent a surgery that was performed by another practitioner. The procedure restored his vision to 20/20. He filed a federal lawsuit against the defendant, alleging medical negligence and other claims. The defendant filed a motion that was deemed a motion to dismiss or, in the alternative, a motion for summary judgment. Continue Reading

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Medical malpractice claims are generally more complex than other matters, and those asserted against employees of the federal government are especially complicated. Thus, plaintiffs pursuing medical negligence cases against federally employed defendants must take special care to follow proper procedures; otherwise, their claims may be terminated. This was demonstrated in a recent Maryland ruling, in which a pro se plaintiff’s claims against a doctor were dismissed due to his failure to abide by state and federal law in filing his lawsuit. If you were injured by the incompetence of a health care provider, it is advisable to meet with a practiced Maryland medical malpractice attorney to assess your rights.

The Plaintiff’s Claims

It is alleged that the plaintiff, who was in a federal facility, received inadequate medical care from the defendant doctors who worked at the facility despite his repeated requests. He filed numerous claims against the defendants in a federal lawsuit, including medical malpractice claims. The defendants filed a motion to dismiss, or in the alternative, a motion for summary judgment. The plaintiff sought and received an extension but ultimately failed to file a response to the motion. The court, upon reviewing the pleadings, found in favor of the defendants and dismissed the plaintiff’s claims.

Medical Malpractice Claims Against Agents of the Federal Government

The court explained that, with regards to suits against the federal government, the United States is protected from liability via the doctrine of sovereign immunity, except where it has explicitly waived its immunity to suit. The Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) expressly waives the sovereign immunity of the United States for specific torts committed by its employees. Continue Reading

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People harmed by negligent medical care have the right to seek compensation from the providers that caused their harm. There are certain requirements a person must comply with prior to pursuing medical malpractice claims, though, and the failure to do so can result in the waiver of the right to recover damages. The conditions precedent to pursuing a claim against a health care practitioner were the topic of a recent opinion issued by a Maryland court in a case in which the plaintiff alleged harm due to the defendant provider’s failure to provide the necessary care. If you were hurt by negligent care, it is prudent to meet with a dedicated Maryland medical malpractice attorney to determine what evidence you need to prove liability.

The Plaintiff’s Harm

It is alleged that the plaintiff fractured his finger while playing basketball. A plate was surgically installed in his finger. It was then recommended that he undergo physical therapy and subsequent surgery, but both were delayed several times by the defendants, who were two different health care providers. He never received the follow-up surgery or physical therapy and currently suffers from chronic pain, numbness, and limited range of motion.

Reportedly, the plaintiff filed a claim with the Maryland Health Care Alternative Dispute Resolution Office (HCADRO) against the defendant and filed certificates of qualified experts. He then filed a medical malpractice case against the defendants, arguing their negligent care caused his harm. The second defendant filed a motion to dismiss, which the court granted. Continue Reading

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