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Kansas City Personal Injury Law Blog

Misdiagnosed Concussions in the NFL (and at Home)

football-1453700_1920-1024x731.jpgAccording to a recently published NPR article, the NFL and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) are ending their partnership for concussion research, with $16 million of the NFL's pledged money left unspent. The end of this relationship, along with the NFL's apparent unwillingness to follow through with its original pledge, brings up a larger conversation about how seriously the medical community is taking the effects of concussion injuries. 

How can your smartphone help after a car accident?

Car accidents of any severity are frightening and disorienting. You may be concerned about sustained injuries, medical bills, vehicle repairs and whether your insurance will cover the damages. Missouri is an at fault state, meaning that the driver responsible for the accident (or their insurer) is required to pay the other party’s bills and damages.

You know that the other party was at fault for the accident, but how can you prove it? Fortunately, your cellphone may be able to help.

Objects Left Inside a Patient Following Surgery

hip_replacement_wiki.jpgOne of the most unimaginable mistakes a surgeon could make is leaving a tool inside the patient's body. But it's not as rare as you think.

Researchers at Loyola University Health System reported that approximately 1,500 instruments are left behind in patients who undergo surgery each year. Out of about 28 million surgical procedures performed in the country annually, it doesn't seem too bad. But just one "misplaced" object can seriously affect a patient's life, leading to chronic pain, further medical expenses, and in the worst cases, death.

Questionable Practices Involved in the Drug Rehab Business

pills-824994_1920-1024x683.jpgDrug overdoses in the U.S. are killing more Americans than automobile accidents.

There are an estimated 23 million addicts in the U.S. The need for addiction treatment is strong, and many in the industry have found it quite lucrative, as private health insurance does cover treatment for roughly 4 million people. Private insurance providers saw their spending on treatment of opioid addiction rise over 1,000% between 2010 and 2015, at an estimated expense of $721 million.

According to Robert Poznanovich, a director with the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation in Los Angeles, many organizations tout their ability to cure addiction, but provide very little proof...or positive outcomes.

Understanding "Never Events" and the Disturbing Consequences

medical-hospital_996911-768x511.jpgA recent news story discussed a horrific event that occurred at the Nair Hospital in Mumbai, India. Rajesh Maru, age 32, was killed when he was sucked into a hospital MRI machine when visiting a relative. Maru entered the MRI room carrying a large metal oxygen cylinder, which was dragged toward the MRI by overwhelming magnetic force. When the cylinder struck the machine, it released a lethal amount of liquid oxygen that killed Maru. 

The Danger of Finding Doctors on Yelp

criticism-3083100_1920-1024x641.jpg

The Internet is how most consumers nowadays find products or services. In the U.S., the number of Internet users in 2016 was roughly 290 million. Can Americans trust online review sites when it comes to choosing a doctor?

Yelp was founded in 2004. Every day, thousands of people visit when seeking a contractor, a florist, or a restaurant. Doctors have always been posted on Yelp and overall ratings range from one to five stars. Shannon Eis of Yelp explained that the site encourages consumers to rate aspects of their experience based on factors including bedside manner, time spent in the waiting room, and other criteria.

Do Good Samaritan Laws Only Affect Healthcare Providers?

first-aid-1732523_1920-1024x585.jpgA man eating at a restaurant suddenly gasps. He grabs his throat, unable to speak. Luckily, an off-duty nurse is standing in line, waiting for her meal. She steps in and performs the Heimlich maneuver, dislodging the food stuck in the man's throat and saving his life. However, she cracks three of his ribs in the process.

Can he sue her for his broken ribs?

In this situation, the answer is "No."

Understanding the Dangers of Hospital-Acquired Infections

koli-bacteria-123081_1920-1024x740.jpgRoughly 2 million people develop bacterial infections every year in the United States, and approximately 250,000 cases originate in hospitals-with 23,000 leading to fatalities. Herb Kuhn, President of the Missouri Hospital Association, says there have been a small number of infections acquired in hospitals, but emphasized that they should "never happen."

The federal government issued monetary penalties to 769 hospitals recently due to their high rates of injuries to patients. Those injuries included instances where patients acquired infections in the facility.

Do Doctors Discriminate Based on Obesity?

weight-loss-2036966_1920-1024x682.jpgSarah Bramblette's doctor placed her on a diet to lose weight. The scale at his office measured only up to 350 pounds, which she exceeded. To determine her weight, she was forced to go to a local junkyard.

People with extreme cases of obesity routinely encounter problems with medical equipment, such as M.R.I. units that are too small to accommodate them. In addition, most medications are not tested to determine appropriate levels for the overweight.

Patty Nece, of Virginia, says many providers are unable or unwilling to address her health concerns beyond her weight. She visited an orthopedist due to hip pain, which he diagnosed as "obesity pain" without conducting an examination. Later, another doctor determined she had progressive scoliosis. Research suggests many physicians are unwilling to provide adequate care or conduct basic diagnostic testing on the obese. The result is:

Patient Lives Are in Nurses' Hands

doctor-2722941_960_720-768x512.jpgWhen you go to a healthcare provider to receive treatment, you probably say you are "going to the doctor." In reality, there is a good chance you are actually being seen by a nurse practitioner, or sometimes a physician's assistant. A 2012 study found that around 60,400 nurse practitioners work in primary care settings in the United States. The field of nursing is expanding, giving certain classifications of nurses additional responsibilities.

However, even nurses with the least amount of required education still have duties that make them directly responsible for patients' lives. If they don't take that seriously, very bad things can happen.

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