medical malpractice lawyers in florida
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Florida Supreme Court holds Florida patients are entitled to access to hospital adverse incident reports, in spite of federal statute.   

Scales of justice for injury lawyer

Florida Supreme Court holds Florida patients are entitled to access to hospital adverse incident reports, in spite of federal statute.    For many decades, there were laws on the books in Florida which specifically prevented patients from having access to information about adverse medical incidents and patient injuries within hospitals, including even information about mistakes made in the patient’s own medical care.   In 2004, Florida voters approved an amendment to the Florida Constitution changing the law and allowing wide access to hospital adverse incident records.  This change to the Florida Constitution is often referred to as the “Patient’s Right to Know”...

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Congrats to UCF on Their New Teaching Hospital, But….

UCF's Hospital and Medical Malpractice

Congratulations to the University of Central Florida on obtaining state approval for building a new teaching hospital to go along with its new medical school.  We are fans of UCF and wish them great success with their medical school.  Unfortunately, there are two concerns that affect consumers that aren’t being mentioned in most of the news stories. The first is that they chose HCA (Hospital Corporation of America) as their partner building and running the hospital.  It’s a shame they chose a “for-profit” hospital chain when there are so many outstanding non-profit hospital systems they might have partnered with, like Orlando...

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Payouts Decline for the 15th Straight Year

Medical Malpractice in Florida

Medical Malpractice Payments Decline for the 15th Straight Year Insurance companies and doctors frequently complain that the rising cost of malpractice claims is a reason to place restrictions on malpractice law suits.   They claim there are too many law suits and claim a need to place caps on the amounts patients can recover for severe injuries because the costs of these awards are onerous, and climbing. However, for the 15th year in a row, malpractice payouts both in Florida and nationwide, have declined, according to statistics released from  The National Practitioner Data Bank.   Insurance companies, of course, are interested in maintaining their bottom line and their stock holders' dividend payouts are more important than covering...

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Appeals court invalidates release form the surgeon made a patient sign BEFORE surgery

Surgeon's Face

 Before performing spinal fusion surgery, the surgeon had the patient sign a release form stating the following: As of January 1, 2013, [the doctor] will not carry any medical malpractice insurance.  Being of sound mind and sound body, I hereby acknowledge this fact and agree not to sue [the doctor] for any reason.  My reason for doing this is that I realize that [the doctor] and his staff will do the very best to take care of me according to community medical standards. During the surgery, the patient’s ureter was allegedly cut, causing significant injury.  The patient sued the surgeon, and the...

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Jury verdict for patient overturned on appeal because the patient’s expert gave surprise testimony at trial

A patient died of meningitis caused by an ear infection, and his widow sued for medical malpractice.  Up until trial, there was no allegation in the pleadings or by the patient’s experts during their pre-trial depositions that the defendant doctor had been negligent by giving the patient samples of Levaquin, an antibiotic. However, during the trial, two of the patient’s expert witnesses testified for the first time that they believed that the doctor had been negligent by giving Levaquin.  The package insert from Levaquin was also admitted into evidence over the defendants’ objection, and the plaintiff reemphasized the Levaquin issue...

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Appeals court holds that a claim brought against a hospital

Appeals court holds that a claim brought against a hospital alleging failure to properly screen its staff members, one of whom then sexually assaulted the patient, is a medical malpractice case and must follow all of the medical malpractice procedural rules.    The patient’s lawsuit had two parts.  The first part claimed that the hospital was negligent and failed to exercise reasonable care for her safety.  A second part of the lawsuit was based on §766.110, Florida Statutes, titled “Liability of Healthcare Facilities.”  §766.110 is a law that says there is a duty on the part of hospitals “to … assure...

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Court order reinstating medical malpractice complaint after dismissal

Appeals court quashes trial court order reinstating medical malpractice complaint after dismissal based on failure to comply with presuit expert “same specialty” requirement.   There is a statute in Florida that says that in a medical malpractice case, the parties can only bring in expert witnesses to testify about the appropriate standard of care who are in the exact same medical specialty as the defendant health care provider who is being sued.   So, for example, even though neurosurgeons and orthopedic surgeons may both perform an identical type of spine surgery, the law would prohibit a neurosurgeon from testifying an orthopedist did...

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Florida Court declares caps on malpractice injury cases unconstitutional

Court room to set caps on damages

In a much-anticipated decision, the Fourth DCA holds that statutory caps in medical malpractice cases imposed by §768.118, Fla. Stat. (2005) are unconstitutional in medical malpractice injury cases, even when there is only one plaintiff. The court found that the caps violate the equal protection provision of Art. I, §2, Fla. Const. The Florida Supreme Court had previously found damage caps in medical malpractice death cases to be unconstitutional. This is the first appellate court to address whether malpractice caps are constitutional in medical malpractice cases that result in injuries which do not cause the death of the patient. This...

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Florida Court reverses decision about limiting number of expert witnesses

The 5th District Court of Appeal has ruled that trial judges have the discretion to limit the number of expert witnesses in medical malpractice trials. The Court receded from its earlier ruling in Lake v. Clark, 533 So.2d 797 (Fla. 5th DCA 1988), that a trial court may not limit expert witnesses in a malpractice trial. Woodson v. Go, 2015 WL 3903589 (Fla. 5th DCA June 26, 2015)....

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