Risks higher for front-seat passengers in some SUV crashes

On June 23rd, the New York Times published an article revealing that front-seat passengers in SUVs may be at increased risk for injury during a motor vehicle collision than drivers.

Recently, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (hereinafter “IIHS”) tested seven leading small SUV vehicles by placing them through “small overlap frontal tests,” the newest of IIHS’s tests, which simulates front-end impact to the passenger’s side of the vehicle. Previously, all seven vehicles had been tested by the IIHS for front-end driver’s side impact ratings and all seven vehicles received the highest rating—“good.” However, when IIHS replicated the test for front-end passenger side impact to determine the extent to which they protect passengers, only one vehicle—the 2016 Hyundai Tucson—earned a “good” rating.  Of the remaining vehicles three—the 2015 Buick Encore, 2015 Honda CR-V, and 2015 Mazda CX-5—earned ratings of “acceptable,” while the 2014 Nissan Rogue and 2014 Subaru Forrester received “marginal” passenger protection ratings, and the 2015 Toyota RAV4 received a “poor” result. 

According federal fatality data, the level or protection that small SUVs afford front-seat passengers is of paramount importance, as 1,600 passengers died in frontal crashes in 2014 alone. Heeding the call to help analyze crash data in an effort to make American roads safer, the IIHS began its testing approximately four years ago. Since then, IIHS testing has prompted 13 automakers to make structural changes to 97 vehicles. And while it seems that many automakers are determined to incorporate IIHS safety testing results in the redesign and improvement of their models, some continue to note that IIHS safety standards “:go beyond” that required under federal law. 

Still, manufacturers like Hyundai, are happy to promote their good results, highlighting the “demanding” standards of IIHS testing in light of their vehicles’ top performance.

How to Make Hospitals Less Deadly

An interesting article in the Wall Street Journal examines the alarming death toll in American hospitals as a result of preventable shortcomings in the health care system.

Structured as a brief list detailing “how to make hospitals safer,” the article examines five ways in which American hospitals are currently failing to adequately meet patients’ needs—exposing the most troublesome areas for fatal medical error—and offers solutions for how hospitals can reduce the number of deaths by medical error made each year (estimated at between 210,000 and 440,000 in 2013):

1.) Adopt Structured Handoffs

• Two-thirds of fatal medical error is caused by miscommunications during staff shift changes. A 2014 study found that structured handoffs—categorizing illness severity, medical actions, and crisis contingency planning—could curb these errors by as much as 30%.

2.) Bring in the Pharmacists

• According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, erroneous medication orders by prescribing doctors kill thousands of Americans each year. A 2001 study found that putting pharmacists in patient areas in American hospitals decreased prescribing errors by 45%, and cut fatal errors by 94%.

3.) Get Serious About Infection

• According to the CDC, approximately 700,000 patients become infected while hospitalized in American hospitals each year, resulting in 75,000 deaths. At present, CDC guidelines for disinfecting surgical tools and devices only become mandatory in the event of a major outbreak.

4.) Fight Diagnostic Error

• The article suggests that the ever-expanding universe of medical knowledge is too much for doctors to navigate and remain updated on alone. As such, the article suggests encouraging physicians to bring pathologists and radiologists into the fold to ensure that they aren’t misdiagnosing, over-diagnosing, or only partially diagnosing their patients’ maladies.

5.) Make Electronic Health Records Interoperable

• According to the federal government, only 14% of clinicians share data with doctors beyond their care organizations—an act that jeopardizes continuity of care and ensuring accurate diagnoses. Congress has already passed legislation directing interoperability of all patient medical records within four years, but the need for universal access to records among a patient’s myriad providers is immediate.

If you or a loved one has been injured or disabled by a medical malpractice, the first step in effective treatment is to contact your physician immediately. And if you or a loved one needs an aggressive, yet compassionate and caring medical malpractice attorney, contact the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein today.

We partner with highly rated medical malpractice attorneys who work closely with our law firm to help get our clients the justice they deserve. By joining resources and experience, together we know how to hold medical professionals and their insurance companies responsible.

Medical errors may be third-leading cause of death

An analysis by two Johns Hopkins Medical School doctors finds that medical errors account for over 250,000 deaths a year - or almost 10 percent of the total deaths in the United States.  That equates to nearly 700 deaths per day, third only to heart disease and cancer. 

The two authors said the errors include everything from bad doctors, surgical complications, mix-ups with the doses or types of medications, to more systemic issues such as communication breakdowns when patients are handed off from one department to another.  The study was conducted to shed light on a problem that many hospitals and health care facilities often avoid talking about. 

Kenneth Sands - Chief Quality Officer at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston - says the numbers aren't alarming. “There has just been a higher degree of tolerance for variability in practice than you would see in other industries,” he explained.  For example, when passengers board a plane, there’s a standard way attendants move around and prepare for flight.  Yet such standardization isn’t seen at hospitals.

The study contends that death from medical error has been understated, in large part, because such error by health providers is not included on death certificates.  The analysis also highlights the fact that the coding system used by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to record death certificate data doesn't capture things like communication breakdowns, diagnostic errors and poor judgment that cost lives. 

While most doctors and other medical professionals are capable and compassionate individuals, medical mistakes continue to occur and the results can be devastating. A medical malpractice claim is a long and complicated legal matter because it's not always easy to prove causation. In addition, claims are bound by a statute of limitations that defines how long someone has to file a claim. With so much at stake, it’s crucial to retain an experienced medical malpractice lawyer. 

If you or a loved one has been injured or disabled by a medical malpractice, the first step in effective treatment is to contact your physician immediately. And if you or a loved one needs an aggressive, yet compassionate and caring medical malpractice attorney, contact the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein today.

We partner with highly rated medical malpractice attorneys who work closely with our law firm to help get our clients the justice they deserve. By joining resources and experience, together we know how to hold medical professionals and their insurance companies responsible.

Bornstein's Blog Turns One

May celebrates the first anniversary of Maine’s premier personal injury law blog. With nearly 100 unique posts in the past year, The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein’s blog has kept Mainers both informed and entertained. With up-to-date information on the latest current events in Maine, as well as ground breaking news on all things personal injury and Social Security Disability law related, visitors have been well-versed on all of the happenings in their home state.

In addition to keeping readers educated, our blog showcases our firm's good will throughout the state and highlights several worthy causes that we support. Seasonal safety tips, recent Supreme Court decisions, and special messages from attorney Joe Bornstein himself, add to the well-rounded blog that proves week-in and week-out to be a wealth of information.

If you missed out on any or all of our blog’s inaugural year, don’t despair. All of our blog posts have been archived and are readily accessible online for your enjoyment. And for our regular readers, we appreciate your support and hope that you keep coming back. We feel you’ll learn something new and useful each time you do.

Stay informed and stay involved, and most importantly stay-up-to-date on Maine’s premier personal injury law blog.

Joe Bornstein – The Lawyer You Need To Know – Now Has The Blog You Need To Read!

www.mainepersonalinjurylaw.com 
 

Law Night - Back By Popular Demand

This Thursday, November 20, 2008, The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein will be extending our business hours once again for Mainers who do not have access to a phone during the daytime. Our office will remain open until 10pm to give Mainers throughout the state the opportunity to call us with their legal questions and speak directly with one of our experienced legal professionals.

Our staff will stand ready to answer your questions about:

• Motor Vehicle Accidents
• Personal Injuries
• Social Security Disability
• Medical Malpractice
• Worker’s Compensation
• Maritime Injuries
• Injuries Related to Certain Prescription Drugs

We are the only law firm in the state of Maine to extend our business hours into the evening in an attempt to give Mainers an even greater access to justice. “Law Night” is a free service provided by The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein and a regular fee schedule is applied to all accepted cases.

Of course our office is open every day, Monday through Friday, from 8am to 5pm. With a statewide practice and five convenient offices in Biddeford, Portland, Lewiston, Augusta, and Bangor, you can be sure there’s a Law Offices of Joe Bornstein near you. And in the chance that you can’t come to us, we’ll come to you.

So give us a call this Thursday Night and be part of Maine’s only “Law Night,” brought to you by The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein.

The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein – Maine Lawyers Working For Maine People

Now After Dark On Law Night!

Law Night:
When: Thursday, November 20, 2008
Time: 5pm - 10pm
Phone: 1-800-CALL-JOE (1-800-2255-563)

About the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein

For more than 40 years, the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein has been specializing in Personal Injury and Social Security Disability Law.

With a statewide practice and six conveniently located offices in Sanford, Biddeford, Portland, Lewiston, Augusta and Bangor, the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein provides access to justice to injured and disabled Mainers. Since 1974, the Law Office of Joe Bornstein has helped more than 23,000 Mainers collect over $300 million in settlements and benefits.

Our legal team consists of 13 specialized attorneys with a support staff of over 65 legal professionals. All of our employees are experienced in many different types of law, including:

  • Personal Injury
  • Motor Vehicle Accidents
  • Motorcycle Accidents
  • Wrongful Death
  • Product Liability
  • Social Security Disability Claims
  • Long Term Disability Claims
  • Veterans Disability Claims
  • Medical Malpractice
  • Dog Bites
  • Birth Defects
  • Worker's Compensation
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries
  • Fractures with or without Surgery
  • ATV Accidents
  • Construction Site Accidents
  • Admiralty and Maritime Accidents
  • Snowmobile Accidents
  • Alcohol Related Accidents
  • Premise Liability
  • Prescription Drug Recalls
  • Serious Spinal Injuries
  • Asbestos Related Injuries
  • Mesothelioma

If you or a loved one has been injured by the negligence of someone or something else, call the Law Offices of Joe Bornstein today for a free and confidential consultation. You may be entitled to compensation.

The Law Offices of Joe Bornstein - Maine Lawyers Working For Maine People