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Over 60 Years In Queens County

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Queens New York Legal Blog

What are adverse drug events?

As individuals grow older, they tend to require more medical intervention, which typically means they require more medications. Healthcare providers use medicines to manage conditions, relieve symptoms and treat disease. Generally speaking, prescription meds are safe, but every once in a while, they do pose some risks. If your loved one lives in a nursing home in New York, it is nice to assume the attendants have everything under control. However, even under the most watchful eye can adverse drug events occur.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an adverse drug event occurs when a medicine causes harm to a person. On average, elderly individuals (those 65 years or older) visit emergency departments approximately 450,000 times each year due to ADEs, which is twice as often as younger persons.

New York surgeon treats pediatric patients while on probation

It is stressful enough for a parent when a child requires surgery without having to wonder whether or not the operating surgeon is competent and qualified. The New York Department of Health charged a pediatric surgeon at a children's hospital last year with incompetence, gross malpractice and other forms of professional misconduct in the cases of five patients who received treatment between 2010 and 2012. The charges resulted in a settlement that allows the surgeon to continue to treat patients while on probation for two years, during which another surgeon must review her records and visit her practice. Because of the settlement, no disciplinary hearing took place in regard to the five cases.

Although information about disciplinary action against New York physicians is available online, the hospital has no legal obligation to inform patients that a doctor is on probation before they receive treatment. It can also be difficult for patients and family members attempting to do due diligence by conducting research on the physician beforehand to find the information on disciplinary actions unless they already know where to look. While the information is available online, it is not always easy to find. 

Criminal charges in fatal medication error case

People in New York have good reason to be concerned about the possibility of being impacted by a medical error given that some studies show these errors to be the third leading cause of death in the United States. When health care professionals make mistakes that contribute to or cause serious injuries or death, it is reasonable for those affected to feel they have the right to seek compensation or justice.

According to a report by National Public Radio, a case against a nurse in Tennessee is raising a lot of concern and is finding many people coming forward asserting that health care professionals should not be punished for making mistakes. The case dates back to an event in December 2017 when the nurse administered the wrong medication to a patient, who died the following day. The drug that was given and the drug that was supposed to be given apparently had similar names.

What can happen if a pregnancy is un- or misdiagnosed?

If your New York doctor fails to abide by the standards the medical community demands of a professional in his or her role, your health may suffer. However, if your doctor fails to diagnose your pregnancy, or if he or she misdiagnoses your complicated pregnancy, you are not the only person whose health will suffer. So too will your baby's. Birth Injury Guide explores the very real dangers of an undiagnosed or misdiagnosed pregnancy for both mom and baby.

Failure to diagnose a pregnancy may occur for any number of reasons, including failure to adequately read test results, failure to diagnose common and not-so-common pregnancy symptoms and failure to follow up on test results. Regardless of the reason, any of these failings can result in dangerous or life-threatening consequences for both you and baby. Pregnancy is a delicate time in any woman's life, which is why the healthcare field requires expectant mothers to undergo constant monitoring during all three trimesters.

Can training help protect your loved one from maltreatment?

When you begin to consider the possibility of finding a nursing home facility for your loved one in New York, it is not uncommon to feel uneasy and even anxious. After all, you will want a facility that meets your requirements and is capable of providing the level of care that you want your family member to have. 

Because maltreatment of the elderly does happen and can take on many forms, it is important that you are aware of signs that could indicate that your loved one is being mistreated. Elder abuse can be physical, emotional and even financial. Perpetrators can be staff members, but also other residents within the facility. When you first visit any of the establishments on your list, be aware of the environment and how each staff member interacts with you and the patients you see. Likewise, observe the level of social activity and the demeanor of the residents. 

Getting to know your medication

When you get sick and turn to your health care provider for help, you expect him or her to thoroughly research your condition before making recommendations for treatment. However, equally as important as a correct diagnosis is making sure you understand the medication you have been prescribed and have all of the information you need to be able to use it the right way. At Futterman, Sirotkin & Seinfeld, LLP, we have helped many people in New York to be aware of the dangers of medical errors. 

While your first instinct may be to thank your doctor for the medication recommendation, take the prescription note and run to your nearest pharmacy, your failure to spend time learning about the medication could prevent you from using it the right way. As such, you may be at a higher risk of experiencing unwanted side effects, overdosing, creating a risky drug reaction and in a worst-case scenario, you could be taking a wrong drug altogether if a mistake was made at your doctor's office. 

When a child's brain is injured due to hospital negligence

There are so many examples of hospital negligence, and we have covered many of these issues and the consequences of these incidents on our blog. Unfortunately, some can be particularly tough, such as those which involve young children. From newborns to teens, children are injured and even pass away as a result of hospital negligence in many ways. We believe that negligent medical workers in Queens and throughout New York should never be able to get away scot-free when their actions have caused young children to suffer. Sadly, this continues to happen at an alarming rate across the country.

Brain injuries among children occur in many different ways in a hospital setting. For example, a child's brain may be injured at the time of their birth, or they may sustain a brain injury during an operation. In fact, a child may even suffer a brain injury after falling down due to a slippery surface while trying to walk around in a hospital. As with any brain injury, the consequences can be lasting, and they can disrupt life in numerous ways. A child's personality may change in the wake of a brain injury, or they may have a hard time concentrating in school after the accident.

Dealing with depression over a birth injury

Patients are injured in hospitals in countless ways, from surgical errors to mistakes involving prescription medication. Some, such as birth injuries, can be particularly devastating. Birth injuries can create problems for mothers, as well as their partners and the children they give birth to. Unfortunately, aside from the physical and financial ramifications of these injuries, emotional hurdles are not uncommon either. Some people may be angry or stressed out, while others may struggle with depression. In some instances, depression can be so severe that it virtually shuts down a victim's ability to function.

If you are in the midst of deep depression due to a birth injury that recently occurred, you should do everything in your power to restore some normalcy in daily life. Perhaps you have had to take time off work or quit your job altogether. Maybe your personal relationships with your spouse, friends and family members are suffering. Maybe you are no longer able to enjoy things that used to make you happy and have a grim outlook on your future.

3 signs you should seek a second medical opinion

Even when you feel fine, submitting to a medical examination can be intimidating. If you are in pain, though, having a successful medical visit can seem nearly impossible. Still, you must advocate for your own healthcare. If your regular doctor is not providing the care you need, you may need to seek a second medical opinion. 

Medical misdiagnosis and mistreatment are likely more common than you think. In fact, doctors may initially misdiagnose as many as 20 percent of serious medical conditions. Still, your health is vital. Until you receive a proper diagnosis, you cannot focus on recovery. Here are three signs you should seek a second medical opinion: 

The influence of patients on preventing prescription errors

When emphasis is focused on preventing medical errors in New York, many people discuss what doctors, nurses, staff members and other health care professionals can do to eliminate the risks of injuring a patient. However, people seeking medical care also uphold some responsibility to protect themselves by being well informed and prepared to advocate for their health and their safety. 

According to John Hopkins University, despite efforts to reduce the number of medical malpractice incidents that occur each year, errors still account for an alarming 250,000 deaths in the United States each year. Experts say with confidence that medical malpractice is now the third leading cause of death even though a majority of those cases were easily preventable. 

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