Chattanooga Personal Injury Law Blog

Is the Veteran's Administration hiring bad doctors?

Most reasonable people would never think of going to a doctor with multiple malpractice accusations on his or her rap sheet. In fact, it's doubtful you'd consider going to a doctor with even one malpractice accusation. However, the Department of Veterans Affairs appears to be hiring doctors with not just one malpractice claim on their records, but multiple instances of malpractice.

USA Today recently published a detailed report on the current status of the doctors employed by the VA. One doctor the report zeroed in on had over a dozen med-mal claims and settlements from two different states on his record. The cases included ones where his surgical errors resulted in maimings, paralysis and death. In one instance, the doctor left a patient's legs paralyzed after the doctor placed a medical device the wrong way. In another case, the doctor made errors while installing spinal screws that left a patient unable to control his bowels and bladder. Following the death of a patient, the state of Wyoming took away the doctor's right to practice medicine there.

Reduce car accident risks with daytime headlight use

Motorcyclists have long known to turn their headlights on during the day as it increases their visibility and dramatically reduces motorcycle crash risk statistics. To all the motor vehicle drivers out there --p have you ever thought of doing the same? It turns out that according to numerous studies, simply flipping on your headlights during the daylight hours can reduce the likelihood of getting into a collision.

Some vehicle manufacturers have taken notice by producing cars that have daytime running lights, but the government has not issued any mandates requiring these features at this time. However, turning one's headlights on during the day is simple, as you only have to flip the switch. So, it's possible that governmental bodies could issue new laws that require daytime headlight use. Then, it will be the drivers' responsibility to comply.

Semitruck crash leaves 2 dead

Two victims died in a crash between a semitruck and a passenger car last Tuesday. According to authorities, the incident happened during the early morning hours, at approximately 1:15 a.m. in Manchester below the exit 110 overpass along Interstate 24.

The Tennessee Highway Patrol reports that the semitruck was being driven by a 70-year-old man from Illinois. The accident happened when he struck the back of a vehicle that was stationary beneath the overpass. The semitruck driver was injured, but he survived the incident. The collision caused the semitruck to catch on fire, but the driver escaped with his life.

Remember semitruck safety this holiday season

As the need for goods increases due to holiday shopping, more semitrucks will venture out on the roads. Being prepared to drive near these large and heavy vehicles is imperative for all drivers. Because the risks are so great, drivers should take a few minutes to brush up on some basic facts about semitrucks.

Semitrucks make up 4 percent of vehicles on the road, but they account for 9 percent of crash fatalities. This disproportionate rate shows just how deadly these large vehicles can be.

What's truck driver burn-out?

There's a little-discussed problem that contributes to truck accidents throughout the nation and it's a lot more complicated than being fatigued and tired. Truckers spend so many hours on the job, driving down the highway, that they can get bored and unhappy. But, at a certain level, the situation gets worse, and they experience trucker "burn-out."

Symptoms of trucker burnout may include hating your job and feeling exhausted every time you get behind the wheel. However, the condition isn't very simple to cure. Ultimately, it can lead to inattentive drivers, truckers who can't sleep very well at night and truckers who are more likely to get into an accident. Even worse, it's not so simple to cure trucker burnout. You might think that a few days off and some good sleep would solve the problem, but a lot of truckers don't overcome the difficulty of trucker fatigue until after they quit their jobs.

Tennessee taxi driver dead following tragic rear-end crash

A 55-year-old man is dead following a catastrophic four-vehicle accident in mid-October. The incident happened in downtown Nashville at approximately 4 p.m. on a Wednesday afternoon. According to authorities, the victim was stopped at a traffic light when another vehicle -- a Ford Econoline Van -- drove into the back of him.

Police say that the cab driver was found dead at the crash site. A passenger in the taxi survived the incident, but not without injuries. Emergency responders rushed the taxi passenger to a nearby hospital for treatment. Two occupants in the van that struck the taxi also survived. The van occupants required hospital care as well.

Prevent nursing home neglect by staying alert

If your mother or father is in a nursing home, you probably took a lot of time -- and did a lot of research -- to choose the best nursing care facility in Bradley. However, even the best nursing homes with the cleanest reputations can neglect their patients. For this reason, you should always stay alert and be diligent to ensure that you're loved one is receiving the best care possible at all times.

Here are a few things you can do to stay on top of your loved one and the care he or she is receiving at a nursing home:

How do I calculate pecuniary damages in a wrongful death suit?

In a successfully navigated wrongful death suit plaintiffs may be able to receive an award of "pecuniary damages." These damages relate to the financial injuries suffered by the close family members and/or dependants who survived the deceased person.

Pecuniary injuries in a wrongful death case will relate to financial calculations that take into account loss of support, lost future inheritance, lost family and household services, costs related to medical care and costs related to end of life expenses. Generally speaking, Tennessee courts will seek to hold financially accountable the parties that caused the death of the individual. Usually, the at fault parties are held liable due to some form of negligence, recklessness or unlawful behavior.

Wrong site surgery cases in Tennessee

The Institute of Medicine published a report in 1999 that shocked the world. The report, To Err is Human, documented the number of deaths, injuries and close calls that happened because of wrong site surgical procedures and other surgical mixups. Before 1999, no one -- including doctors -- were aware just how bad this problem was.

Wrong site surgery injuries were probably the most worrisome part of this report because they should have been completely preventable. In these cases, a patient goes in for a surgical procedure, but doctors perform the procedure on the wrong body part. Believe it or not, patients have had completely healthy limbs removed, while the limb that needed to be removed remained. The same has happened with fingers, toes, organs and other body parts. Doctors and preparatory staff sometimes make mistakes pre-surgery that involves the wrong body part being at risk of getting operated on.

Did your loved one die in an accident?

Many fatal accidents are nothing more than that: accidents that were no one's fault. Families are left to deal with the difficult time following their loved one's loss without any monetary assistance to deal with the costs and loss of family income associated with death.

In other cases, a fatal accident is the direct result of the negligent or unlawful actions of another party. In these cases, surviving close family members can file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party to recover financial compensation related to their loss and damages.