San Bernardino Medical Malpractice and the Discovery Rule

According to a KTLA post in November of 2016, a California mother sued a health care provider for her son’s delayed diagnosis. A Long Beach mother claimed that doctors misdiagnosed her then 8-month-old son’s injury. He allegedly had a penny lodged in his esophagus. Instead, he was allegedly diagnosed with a viral infection after she took him to HealthCare. The mother claimed that the healthcare providers dismissed her requests for further testing. Her son allegedly continued to suffer from a worsening rash and fever.

She allegedly returned to the same clinic five times because of her son’s continued suffering. According to the mother, the providers continuously questioned her ability to pay for their services. It was only after she took her son to the ER at Long Beach Memorial Medical Center that the true medical condition was discovered. An X-ray revealed her son had a penny stuck in his esophagus. The penny was compromising his breathing.

Her son was immediately transferred to children’s hospital where the penny was removed from his esophagus. The specialist treating her son said the penny was probably in his esophagus for about three weeks based on the money’s corrosion. The mother later learned the penny had caused an additional injury, two large ulcers. She is suing for damages related to alleged negligence regarding the misdiagnosis of her son’s injury.

Medical Negligence in San Bernardino

Medical negligence involves a doctor, nurse, or other healthcare professional failing to provide a patient with standard medical treatment. Standard medical treatment refers to treatment that does not cause additional harm to a patient. If the medical provider does cause additional medical harm, he or she may be liable for medical malpractice.

The Statute of Limitations in a San Bernardino Medical Malpractice Claim

Every personal injury claim allows an injured victim to sue the liable party for damages. Damages include things like medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. However, California does not give an injured victim, including a medical malpractice patient, an unlimited amount of time in which to file a lawsuit in court.

According to California medical malpractice law, an injured patient has three years from the date of the injury to file a lawsuit. For instance, if a patient received substandard treatment that caused an additional injury on February 1, 2014, he or she would have until February 1, 2017 to file a claim. The lawsuit does not have to be resolved by that time, only filed in San Bernardino court. It can be resolved after the three-year-period expires.

If the injured patient fails to file a medical malpractice claim within three years, he or she is barred from obtaining damages. The legal term “barred” refers to not being allowed to sue for the damages the at-fault party caused. For instance, if a patient was injured on February 1, 2014, but he or she waits until June 2017 to file a lawsuit, it would be automatically dismissed.

Contact Sanford A. Kassel Regarding Your San Bernardino Medical Malpractice

The discovery rule in medical malpractice does give you a little more time. You are able to sue a year after you discovered your medical malpractice injury. The discovery rule comes into play when you discover the injury after the standard statute of limitations. If you need help with you medical malpractice claim, contact us.

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