Articles Posted in Department of Veteran Affairs Medical Malpractice

At a veterans’ hospital, 92 veterans were given incorrect radiation doses to treat their prostate cancer. According to the article, “most veterans got significantly less than the prescribed dose while others received excessive radiation to nearby tissue and organs.” Since then, the medical center has stopped all prostate cancer treatment because of the medical errors found. Thus far, none of the patients have filed a medical malpractice suit against the medical center.

Read more about the veterans’ hospital here.

After long debate, a federal bill has been proposed that would allow military families to sue for medical malpractice. Currently there are laws in place that make it nearly impossible for GIs and their families to sue for medical malpractice. This proposed law is unique because the federal bill would hold the government, not doctors, accountable for non-combatant related injuries. In one example of military personnel unable to sue, a GI had the wrong breast operated on to remove cancer. She was unable to sue. Her medical malpractice attorney claims even convicted felons in prison can sue the government for medical malpractice, but military personnel cannot.

Read more about this medical malpractice debate here.

A woman died after giving birth to her first born on a military base. Her parents thought they may have a medical malpractice case because during surgery a uterine artery was cut causing massive internal bleeding and two surgical sponges were left in her abdomen afterwards. Unfortunately for the family, a legal precedent prohibits medical malpractice lawsuits when military service members are killed or injured by negligence, according to the article. The parents say the hospital claimed their daughter bled to death.

Read more about the military medical malpractice precedent here.

A previous army nurse, who at the time was currently working as a civilian, at an Army hospital allegedly infected at least 15 patients with hepatitis C. The allegedly negligent nurse poured medication into an infected container he brought from home for patients. The nurse is facing 20 years in prison if convicted.

Read more about the alleged medical infection here.

An article claims Veterans Health Administration System is better than the private sector hospital systems which may be from electronic health records. The article claims the VA hospitals are “safer, more efficient and more technologically advanced than their counterparts in the private sector.” This in turn would reduce medication errors, the article suggests. The article credits Dr. Kenneth Kizer for transforming the VA system through decentralization and introducing the electronic health records.

Read more about Kizer’s hospital transformation here.

A Veteran’s Administration clinic has warned patients they may be susceptible to a possible contaminant exposure if they were given colonoscopies in the previous years. This has sparked VA clinics nationwide to review their own procedures. The patients may have been exposed to “infectious bodily fluids” from other patients that have also received colonoscopies. Another VA clinic has now warned their patients there may have been a problem with their ear, nose and throat clinic.

Read more about the contaminant exposure here.

After reviewing 5 cases of soldier suicides, an article discusses similarities found amongst the men. The article determines there was “a failure to diagnose or properly treat combat veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder or brain injuries, despite clear symptoms” and overmedication resulting from these stresses and injuries that may have contributed to the death of these soliders.

For the full story, click here.

The widow of man who died shortly after undergoing gallbladder surgery at an Illinois VA Hospital has settled her lawsuit against the U.S. Government. A statement released by the widow’s attorney alleges a mixture of medical negligence and a failure to adequately perform a background check as the factors which caused the veteran’s death. This same Illinois VA Hospital has been the subject of many recent medical malpractice lawsuits and internal governmental investigation after 9 veterans were killed and 34 more were seriously injured over a two year span. To read more about this VA medical malpractice story, click here.

Two United States Congressmen have recently re-introduced legislation aimed at hedging against VA medical malpractice. Amongst the call for more stringent background checks of doctors and staff, the bill requires applying physicians to disclose all prior medical malpractice allegations. Call for this legislation originated over a year ago when it was discovered some Illinois veterans received substandard care in an Illinois Department of Veteran Affairs Hospital which ultimately resulted in their wrongful death. To read more about this Department of Veteran Affairs medical malpractice story, click here.

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