"A hospital emergency room is never allowed to delay treatment so long that it catastrophically injures the patient; that's a rule of patient safety," Collins explains.
"Some say there are lots of frivolous lawsuits, but lawyers would be fools to take on a frivolous case," says Barry Furrow, director of the Health Law Program at the Earle Mack School of Law at Drexel University.
"The idea that medical malpractice is free money for unhappy patients is wrong," says Jeffrey Toobin, CNN senior legal analyst. "Malpractice is not about bad results; it's about bad conduct by medical professionals," he says.
If you'd like to contact an attorney to find out whether your situation would qualify, Lawyers.com and the American Board of Professional Liability Attorneys allow you to search for medical malpractice attorneys in your area.
"I'm hoping doctors and nurses all over the country will want to go check their emergency room to make sure what happened to Malyia Jeffers doesn't happen in their facility," Collins says. "So we're improving care for children all over country."
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For CFS patients, the "standard of care" may be a sticking point, because there is, as yet, no "accepted treatment". Lawyers weren't interested in my case when they heard what my diagnosis was, because first they'd have to convince the jury that CFS is real.
Nonetheless, I filed the lawsuit myself so that it'll be a matter of public record that these doctors don't listen to patients. In the future, someone else will be able to point to the fact that there was a prior lawsuit with the same claims of the doctors ignoring the patient's symptoms. Meanwhile, I did force them to spend their valuable time dealing with the paperwork. I'm told the worst culprit turned sickly green when he was handed the lawsuit and told what it was and why.
I wasn't expecting the lawsuit to accomplish anything for me, but it might help someone else in the future by proving this clown has a history of not listening and of diagnosing female patients as "depressed divorcee" even when they had objective physical symptoms (like a rash or bronchitis) to prove there's something wrong.