Potential injuries and disabilities from preterm labor

Published on Jan 17, 2017 at 8:42 pm in General Blogs.

Welcoming a new baby into your home should be one of the most exciting days of your life. Despite taking your vitamins, visiting your doctor and doing everything you can to prepare for childbirth, your body may determine that the baby wants to come early.

While premature babies can survive after 24 or 25 weeks of gestation, preterm babies are more susceptible to disabilities and serious health complications than those who reach full term.

AAA study examines whether Indian Head Highway’s reputation is deserved

Published on Jan 17, 2017 at 8:40 pm in General Blogs.

If you were to ask any resident of Prince George’s County to identify which major thoroughfares had the best overall traffic levels or best served as a shortcut from Point A to Point B, chances are good that you’d receive a host of different answers from area residents eager to demonstrate their knowledge of local roadways.

If you were to ask which major thoroughfares in the county were the most dangerous, however, chances are also good that you would receive a near universal response: Maryland 210.

Indeed, this roadway — known as Indian Head Highway — has earned a less than favorable reputation over the years, owing in large part to an infamous and utterly horrific accident back in 2008 when eight people lost their lives in a drag racing accident.

Medical malpractice lawsuit crisis? No, just a medical malpractice crisis.

Published on Jan 6, 2017 at 8:48 pm in General Blogs.


With control of Congress and the White House, there are murmurings that Republicans will resurrect tort reform such as caps on medical malpractice compensation. The argument goes that rampant medical malpractice litigation is driving up the costs of health care and runaway juries are driving good doctors out of business.

But the facts do not support the hysteria. Medical malpractice lawsuits are actually down. Malpractice insurance premiums are also way down. It’s as tough as ever to win a malpractice verdict. So why the push? Malpractice “reform” represents a financial windfall to physicians, health care corporations and insurance companies.

Who is culpable for distracted driving accidents?

Published on Jan 5, 2017 at 8:52 pm in General Blogs.

Apple, SnapChat and other tech companies sued over traffic deaths

When an intoxicated driver causes a fatal accident, the family can sue the bar that helped that person get sloppy drunk. When a texting driver causes an accident, should victims be able to sue the companies that make it so easy and appealing to use smartphones while driving?

This debate is playing out in courts and legislatures around the country. A Wisconsin man whose daughter was killed by a driver distracted by a live-streaming app recently sued Apple Inc. for wrongful death. The lawsuit may not succeed, but more and more people are suggesting that smartphones and apps should be disabled while a car is in motion.

What do you think? Texting while driving is already illegal, but the problem is not going away.

First phase of transformative nursing home regulations now in effect

Published on Jan 4, 2017 at 8:53 pm in Nursing Home Abuse.

It may come as a surprise for people to learn that much of the cost of nursing home care in the U.S. is covered by the federal Medicaid and Medicare programs. Consider that the price tag for this care reached an astounding $75 billion in 2014 alone.

While this steady stream of reliable income is naturally a great boon to U.S. nursing homes, as with most situations in life, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Indeed, in exchange for federal funding, nursing homes must agree to abide by rules established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

As it turns out, HHS Secretary Sylvia Matthews proposed a groundbreaking set of rules, slated to be rolled out in three separate phases, just last year. In fact, the first of these phases officially took effect in late November, marking the first time in 25 years that the federal rules for nursing homes have undergone any substantial changes.

Health care is a high-risk job for injuries

Published on Nov 23, 2016 at 8:24 pm in General Blogs.

Nurses and care workers get hurt twice as often as construction workers!

You may not think of health care as “back-breaking” labor. In reality, nurses and care workers on the front lines with patients have a higher rate of musculoskeletal injuries – sprains, strains and back injuries – than most blue-collar industries.

Such injuries can be debilitating and even career-ending. The same Baltimore area hospital systems with an international reputation for healing can be callous when it comes to caring for their own injured employees. Workers who are seen as “lingering” on disability are often hassled, shortchanged, pressured back to work or terminated.

ECRI Institute names top ten tech-related health risks for 2017

Published on Nov 16, 2016 at 8:25 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Every year, the ECRI Institute, the renowned Pennsylvania-based nonprofit committed to “promoting the highest standards of safety, quality, and cost-effectiveness in healthcare,” releases a much-anticipated ranking of the top ten technological hazards in the healthcare sector.

Last year, the top spot on the list went to improper sterilization of reusable medical instruments (i.e., flexible endoscopes) resulting in potential infection. This place atop the list was logical given the number of infection cases reported and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s issuance of a safety warning on this topic in February 2015.

Study finds superbug risk is alive and well in hospital ICUs

Published on Nov 2, 2016 at 8:27 pm in Medical Malpractice.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as many as one out of every 25 patients are affected by a hospital-acquired infection — or HAI — on any given day here in the U.S. with nearly half of these infection cases originating in the intensive care unit.

In light of these unnerving numbers and the annual toll taken by HAIs like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), the CDC funded a study designed to uncover more about the so-called “triangle of transmission” in hospital settings, meaning how HAIs are spread among patients, nurses and the environment. The results of this study, which were equal parts illuminating and disturbing, were presented at a national conference held just last week. 

Ban on forced arbitration restores the right of nursing home residents to sue

Published on Oct 28, 2016 at 6:08 pm in Nursing Home Abuse.

Federal agency ruling benefits 1.5 million elderly

Arbitration can be a good option for resolving legal disputes. At many nursing homes, it is the only option. The fine print of care contracts prevents patients and their families from bringing lawsuits for fraud, injuries, abuse or wrongful death. Their only recourse is arbitration, which is binding and private. Nursing home owners say this helps them control costs. Critics say it helps providers avoid accountability.

In September, the federal Department of Health and Human Service ruled that nursing homes receiving federal funds cannot mandate forced arbitration. Since more than 70 percent of nursing home residents qualify for Medicaid or Medicare, the ban affects the vast majority of the 1,500 nursing homes across the country. For now, the rule applies only to new admissions, not existing nursing home contracts.

Will D.C. adopt one of the most stringent distracted driving laws in the nation?

Published on Oct 19, 2016 at 6:09 pm in General Blogs.

Maryland has adopted a relatively firm stance when it comes to distracted driving. Indeed, state law dictates that no licensed driver may use a “text messaging device” to send, read or write messages behind the wheel (with the exception of contacting 911), classifying this as a primary offense punishable by fines and even license suspension if the driver is under 18.

State law adopts a similarly hard-line stance against using a handheld device to talk behind the wheel, with licensed adult drivers essentially confined to the use of hands-free devices (with the exception of starting or ending a call, turning the phone on and off, or contacting 911). For their part, licensed drivers under 18 are banned from using both handheld devices and hands-free devices (with the exception of calling 911), meaning no talking while driving in any capacity. 



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