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Preparing for your cruise

Posted by on 7:50 pm in Medical Malpractice | 0 comments

According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, cruise ships hold a great deal of potential danger for the elderly, although that danger may, in fact, lead to only moderate injury.

A study by the NCBI found a total of 663 injuries in three years while studying cruise ships, which lead to a very reassuring 0.8 injuries per 1000 passengers. However, of those who were injured, the vast majority were elderly. The median age of the injured parties was 72, meaning most of those who suffered an injury where past the age of retirement.

Injuries were suffered throughout the ship and on land, with slips and falls causing a plurality of injuries on board (44%) and a vast majority on land (69%).

Most injuries (65%) happened on the ship itself.

The good news about the injuries is that most were not serious. Only 5% required a referral to a specialist and only 2% needed to be hospitalized on shore. The most common injury was simply some cuts and scrapes.

According to attorney Louis A. Vucci, the five most common kinds of injuries are slips and falls, illness, ship collisions, assault, and falling from one level of the ship to another.

While many of these potential accidents are traumatic, the data suggests those traumatic injuries are indeed quite rare, and the majority fall into the first two categories.

However, it is important to always be watchful and careful when on board and when on shore, especially for those who have reached their frailer years.

Another important point made by Mr. Vucci is that cruises may be liable for damages should the injuries be the result of some form of neglect on the crew’s part. This can include a failure to diagnose an injury or illness, giving the wrong diagnosis, not getting informed consent from a patient on board when it is required, doing the incorrect medical procedure, or failing to treat a patient.

These may be rare and upsetting possibilities, but it behooves all those reading to be aware of such potential problems and to guard against them.

A further point to make at the end is that should the ship be liable for any injury that occurs while you are in the ship crew’s care (either on the ship or shore), you should consult a lawyer quickly since the statute of limitations is very brief for cruises.

It is important for all to have the chance to relax and to take a break, especially those who are in their golden years, but at the same time, risks exist everywhere, and to be prepared for all eventualities is to be protected against many of the worst possible outcomes. Be sure after you sign up for your next cruise that you do your research on the ship, the crew, the cruise company, and all the potential hazards that may await you. That way, you’ll be able to better and more safely relax on your trip.

Redefining Informed Consent in Wisconsin Medical Malpractice

Posted by on 3:26 pm in Medical Malpractice | 0 comments

A 2012 Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling may possibly expand the definition of informed consent to include treatments and tests that physicians may not consider advisable or necessary. This would have implications for medical malpractice as well as the cost of public health.

Wisconsin Medical Malpractice Case Study

A 43-year-old patient Thomas Jandre was diagnosed with Bell’s palsy when a CT scan showed he was negative for hemorrhagic stroke. Eleven days after the ER visit Jandre suffered a massive stroke because of the undetected but nearly completely blocked right internal carotid artery. The family sued the ER doctor for neglecting to provide Jandre with information on his diagnostic options that would have detected the blockage, even though the symptoms did not seem to indicate the need for such tests. Jandre was awarded $2 million in damages, a ruling upheld in the state appellate court as well as the Supreme Court.

Implications for Wisconsin Medical Malpractice

The ruling may serve as a basis for the expansion of the current informed consent laws embodied in the Wisconsin Department of Health Services section on Informed Consent (Chapter 94 Section 03) which does specify the need for informed consent to perform alternative treatment modes, but not for alternative tests or treatments that the attending physician does not believe necessary or beneficial to a particular patient. Because of the ruling in the Jandre case, physicians may have to practice what is termed as “defensive medicine” which may result in the performance of unnecessary tests and alternative treatments to guard against coming under fire.

Despite the financial implications, the broadening of patients’ rights to know about their medical condition and options and physician accountability is thought to eventually lead to better health care. If you believe you have not been provided with sufficient information in your medical care, consult with a medical malpractice lawyer in Wisconsin to assess your case.

Unpaid Overtime Claims in Wisconsin

Posted by on 5:12 am in Unpaid Overtime | 0 comments

Under most circumstances, the laws regarding overtime pay in Wisconsin are much like the federal laws outlined in the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Wisconsin’s laws are slightly different from federal laws and if your employer owes you overtime pay, it can be advantageous to you to understand which set of laws will be most beneficial to your specific situation.

The statute of limitations for Wisconsin’s overtime laws is two years, while the FLSA’s is three years. For these overtime laws to take effect, you must be able to prove that your employer withheld deserved pay from you and did so intentionally.

Filing for Unpaid Overtime in Wisconsin

There is a lot of strategy involved in filing a successful disputed overtime pay lawsuit. Choosing which set of laws you file under can make a huge difference. Some job categories are exempt under the state’s laws, but can file claims under the FLSA and vice versa. The services of a Wisconsin overtime claims lawyer can help you determine which set of laws would be most suitable for you to file under.

Your attorney may file the suit directly to the court without an investigation from the Department of Workforce Development (DWD), but doing so may limit the penalties imposed upon your employer for breaking employment laws and breaching its contract with you. It is typically better to wait for the DWD to finish its investigation, as that can provide your case with additional evidence to use and shows that you’ve gone through the appropriate channels to make your claim as fair as possible.

How Can I File a Claim for My Unpaid Overtime?

It is advisable to consult an attorney before choosing to file a lawsuit. Unpaid overtime claims are complex and an attorney’s help can play a key role in building your case and understanding which statutes to file the suit under. The lawsuit can be filed in state court, federal court, or even both. A lawyer will be able to determine which is most appropriate for you.