Unfortunately, medical malpractice is a common reality for many people across the United States. For those lucky enough to have not been affected, medical malpractice is a legal issue that occurs when a medical or health care provider strays from their normal course of action causing injury to their patient. A recent article details how some California residents were victimized by a very extreme case of medical malpractice. A Billion-dollar spinal surgery scam has been exposed, placing hospital and law officials in federal prison. According to the article, middlemen were paid to find patients that suffered from back problems specifically stemming from work-related injuries. Doctors were then paid under the table to perform spinal surgeries on these patients that were often medically unnecessary to the patient’s diagnosis. Medical care providers at hospitals, specifically Pacific Hospital in Long Beach, California, then performed surgeries using counterfeit screws that were not approved by the FDA. These screws were mixed in with other FDA approved screws so at first glance it would be nearly impossible to tell the difference. As an added part to the scam, the hospitals would then overcharge the patient for the operation and counterfeit parts used during the surgery. Officials say that there is no way to know exactly how many people fell victim to this medical malpractice scam because the screws were mixed together, but some estimates state that hundreds, if not thousands, of patients, could have been involved. These surgeries left victims in unbearable pain and left some impaired for life. Michael Dorbot, former owner of Pacific Hospital in Long Beach, was sentenced and is serving five years in federal prison and paid $10 million in fines for his part in the operation. Alongside Dorbot, Ron Calderon, California state senator, was convicted of accepting bribes to keep lucrative legal loopholes open in order to keep this operation under the table. He was sentenced to 42 months in prison.
Not every case of medical malpractice is this high profile, meaning it may go unnoticed. If you feel your healthcare provider has breached their duties contact a Spiros law attorney as soon as possible for a free consultation where we can help determine what category your case may fall into. Many types of medical malpractice fall under but are not limited to the following categories:
- Misdiagnosis: When a doctor examines the patient but fails to correct the illness or injury. This is medical malpractice because it prevents the patient from receiving the correct treatment and could conclude in worsened symptoms.
- Delayed Diagnosis: In this case, a doctor may misdiagnose at first but eventually corrects the diagnosis and the patient receives the correct care. However, in the process of the delayed diagnosis, the condition worsens because the patient did not receive the necessary treatment right away.
- Failure to Treat: Sometimes, a doctor will come to the correct diagnosis but in these situations, they fail to recommend the correct treatment.
- Surgical Errors: Examples of surgical errors may include performing the incorrect procedure, damaging organs, nerves or tissue during surgery, performing unnecessary surgery or administering an incorrect amount of anesthesia.
- Birth Injury: Birth injuries may stem from inadequate prenatal care or negligence that occurred during birth. Birth injuries can result in the need for lifelong care.
- Medical Product Liability: Medical professionals are not always the cause of medical malpractice. Sometimes, a patient will suffer unnecessarily because a piece of equipment or a device was poorly designed.
When you or a loved one are injured, the only thing you should worry about is a healthy recovery. If you suspect medical malpractice call a Spiros Law attorney at (217) 328-2828. We are committed to standing up for those who fall victim to medical malpractice. We will fight on your behalf so you can focus on what’s most important, a full recovery.