Medical Malpractice News
The Special Focus Facilities List is a national registry of nursing homes that are considered to be problem facilities that require monitoring for poor and negligent treatment. The list was created by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, and as of 2010, there were at least 126 nursing homes nationwide that qualified for this negative attention.
As of June 21, 2012, the Laurels of Sandy Creek Nursing Home in Wayland, Michigan had been on the SFF List for two months, and the status was earned just prior to an accusation of gross negligence in the death of 80-year old Doris Robbins that occurred on May 6. Robbins’ daughter, Patricia Slomski, told Wood TV 8 in Michigan that Robbins was permitted to take her afternoon nap, and she simply never woke up. Robbins had been suffering from myriad health complications; however, she was persistent and dedicated to improvement.
According to Wood TV, Robbins was suffering from medical issues as early as 10 a.m. on that day, and nurses tended to her but never alerted the facility’s physician. At 3:45 p.m., Robbins had been found unresponsive during her nap, and she was declared dead. Reports show that the nurses did not try to perform CPR or resuscitate her in any way, nor did they call an ambulance or the police.
Soon after, the staff of the nursing home released a statement:
"The report that you had with you represents the findings of the State Survey team and we have an opportunity to respond and to dispute those findings and we are currently in that process. We have had findings overturned 50% in a recent survey cycle. We would suggest and request that you do not prematurely report findings that have not been reviewed. This will only put undue concerns in our family’s minds. The Laurels of Sandy Creek is very proud of the dedicated, caring staff that serves our residents, families and the community of Wayland."
The Laurels of Sandy Creek Nursing Home was 1 of 24 facilities that were added to the SFF List in the past 5 months. It is currently 1 of 4 facilities in Michigan on the SFF List, with a fifth nursing home having recently “graduated” from SFF status.
The Special Focus Facilities List is a national registry of nursing homes that are considered to be problem facilities that require monitoring for poor and negligent treatment. The list was created by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, and as of 2010, there were at least 126 nursing homes nationwide that qualified for this negativeRead More
In 2010, Tom Douglas filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against Manor Care Inc., HCR Manor Care Services Inc., Healthcare and Retirement Corp. of America LLC, and Heartland Employment Services LLC as he blamed his mother’s death on the negligence of her nursing home. Dorothy Douglas was reported to have died from dementia within the weeksRead More
On September 12, 2008, Arvia Johnson filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against Dr. H. Jeffrey Schwartz in Maryland, contending that the physician had committed negligence in an outpatient colonoscopy surgery. After a 5-day trial, the jury ruled in Johnson’s favor and he was awarded a settlement of $23,791.19 for his medical costs, as well asRead More
Rebecca Fielding, in agreement with her husband, Enso Martinez, had hoped to give birth to their child at home. However, due to complications and the necessity of a Caesarean section, Fielding was transported via ambulance to the emergency room at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. But instead of receiving prompt medical attention and surgery, FieldingRead More
A 5-year old Pennsylvania boy was recently awarded $1.1 million in a medical malpractice lawsuit over a surgical procedure that left him with a brain injury. At only 11-months old, Keonte Graham suffered from sleep apnea so badly that his parents took him to Dr. Andrew Shapiro in 2007 for consultation and to find aRead More
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) defines the Electronic Health Record (EHR) system as the electronic version of patient medical history. Healthcare providers actively maintain and update this record and may also “include all of the key administrative clinical data relevant to that persons care under a particular provider, including demographics, progress notes,Read More
Errors by radiologists can occur for a number of reasons, from misreading X-rays to poor communication with physicians, and they can result in very serious health complications that can even be life-threatening. In the case of one New York man, an error by a radiologist proved to be life-altering and a jury awarded him $2.1Read More
In 2004, Spokane resident Darlene Turner visited Dr. Nathan Stime for a physical after she had been feeling considerably ill, and the physician determined that she had terminal cancer. While that news must have been both shocking and horrifying for Turner, it was presumably even more shocking when she learned that Dr. Stime’s diagnosisRead More
On March 28, 2011, 17-year old Jennifer Olenick underwent a routine wisdom tooth extraction procedure. While that sounds typical and seemingly ordinary, Jennifer wound up entering a coma and dying ten days later. According to the Baltimore Sun, “[a]n autopsy report showed she died because of a lack of oxygen to her brain during surgery.”Read More
The family of 10-year-old Shannon Reilly filed a lawsuit against St. Charles Hospital and Rehabilitation Center in Port Jefferson, claiming several of the staff’s mistakes during the delivery of the baby girl in November 2002 led to the development of her cerebral palsy. Although the family was offered an $8 million settlement in 2009, attorneyRead More
Last week, Florida’s House of Representatives approved a business-backed bill that will shift the state’s test for the admissibility of expert witness testimony from the Frye standard to the Daubert standard. Approximately 28 other states and the federal courts use this tougher standard, which critics say would pose a challenge for patients who pursue medicalRead More
One of the largest medical malpractice cases in Maryland’s history was settled earlier this month for a confidential amount. Nearly 250 patients have settled their civil lawsuits against Dr. Mark Midei and Catholic Health Initiatives, the company who owned St. Joseph’s, accusing the cardiologist of implanting unnecessary heart stents in them. According to The BaltimoreRead More
This week, the Georgia Supreme Court heard a medical malpractice case involving the death of 15-year-old Shaquille Johnson. Shaquille Johnson’s death was caused by blood clots in his lungs, which his attorneys argue were missed due to improper testing. The Albany Herald reports that Thelma and Sheldon Johnson sued the attending emergency room physician, Dr.Read More
A new medical malpractice law in Florida is drawing criticism from many groups who allege the new law violates the privacy rights established in the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, Bloomberg Business Week reports. On July 1, the day Senate Bill 1792 went into effect, five trial attorneys filed lawsuits against healthcare providers.Read More
Zannos Grekos, a cardiologist whose license was revoked by the Florida State Board of Medicine in April after he was found to have committed medical malpractice following the death of a patient, is appealing his case. The case, Zannos Grekos M.D. v. Department of Health, was filed last month with the First District Court ofRead More
Last year, The Missouri Supreme Court struck down a legislative cap set on the amount awardable for “pain and suffering” in medical malpractice suits, ruling that the cap violated a patient’s right to a jury trial, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The cap was originally set at $350,000 and was established in 2005. Recently,Read More
The cap for non-economic damages in California medical malpractice cases is set at $250,000, and it’s been that way since the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act (MICRA) was first passed in 1975. The Consumer Watchdog advocacy group, along with a man whose two children died after a drugged driver crashed into them, wants to liftRead More
A four-day medical malpractice trial in Pennsylvania concluded with the jury awarding a man from Hatsboro, Pennsylvania $4 million. The man had brought the case against his physician when he received nerve damage from a procedure performed in his physician’s office. The decision is unique in that it is the first medical malpractice verdict inRead More
Four recent medical malpractice lawsuits – whose original incidents date back as far as six years – have been decided in favor of the plaintiffs. Loss of Husband to Bad Diagnosis An Alabama woman who lost her husband in 2008 was awarded $4 million by a jury in Walker County. Donna Hallmark claimed in herRead More
Voters in California are going to be the latest decision makers in a long and contentious argument over pain and suffering awards tied to medical malpractice. In California, pain and suffering awards (also called non-economic awards) have been capped at $250,000 for almost four decades in medical malpractice cases. A recently-qualified state ballot initiative (PropositionRead More
With thousands of lawsuits still cuing up for the foreseeable future, makers of mesh vaginal implants have recently suffered serious setbacks in the courtroom. Boston Scientific was ordered to pay a Texas woman more than $70 million after a device left her with permanent damages. The same week, Johnson & Johnson was ordered to payRead More
As the shock of comedienne Joan Rivers’ death continues to swirl, a new conversation has begun to take a prominent place in the conversation: Was Rivers the victim of medical malpractice? Speculation about what happened in New York City’s Yorkville Endoscopy Clinic is all over the map with the media, the public and attorneys weighingRead More
The SFF List is split into 5 categories to help track the status of the nursing homes – New Additions, Not Improved, Improving, Recently Graduated, and No Longer in Medicare and Medicaid. In order to qualify for that final status, a nursing home has either closed or voluntarily left the CMS in order to make corrections and adjustments under federal health laws.