Medical Malpractice Claims May Reach New Jersey

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Patients who incur ailments for unknown reasons can sometimes lead investigators to look into the patient’s medical providers. In one such case, it was found that an out-of-state oral surgeon apparently violated numerous regulations that left 7,000 of his patients potentially exposed to contracting HIV, Hepatitis and other serious diseases. If the contraction of such diseases is traced back to the medical provider, it could lead New Jersey residents and other citizens who may have been a patient of the provider to pursue a medical malpractice claim against them.

The violations are said to have been discovered after a patient contracted Hepatitis after being told there were no risks of contracting the disease. Health inspectors went to the oral surgeon’s office and discovered numerous violations, including the use of dirty instruments. Officials also claim that the surgeon and his staff also reused needles.

After the violations were discovered, Oklahoma authorities began their effort to notify patients of the surgeon of their risk of contracting HIV or Hepatitis. However, given that the surgeon was in practice for 36 years, authorities have stated that they are unsure just how many patients may have been exposed, as their records only go back to 2007. It is unclear whether the surgeon will face criminal charges as a result of the investigation.

Although it is unclear whether any New Jersey residents may have been exposed to these apparent acts of medical malpractice, the negligence claimed may result in individuals from a large number of states being affected. Given the seriousness of the allegations, the damages suffered by patients could be significant. If a malpractice claim is filed, a successful litigation could allow those harmed to receive the compensation they need to be properly treated, which may go a long ways toward ensuring they resume a healthy and normal lifestyle.

Source: nj.com, “HIV tests urged for 7,000 dental patients after discovery of unclean instruments,” March 28, 2013

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