infected cell

For patients and hospitals, health care associated infections (HAIs) can cause serious personal and financial consequences—and possibly even death. The experts at Berkowitz and Hanna LLC explain that lawsuits involving HAIs that lead to a death are brought under the doctrine of wrongful death, and the family of the deceased must show that the death resulted from a preventable medical mistake.

A 2013 study by JAMA Internal Medicine estimates the total annual costs for five major HAIs were $9.8 billion, with surgical site infections contributing the most. Recently WYFF News 4 reported on lawsuits filed against Greenville Health System in South Carolina on behalf of three patients who are said to have gotten infections from an outbreak of Mycobacterium abscessus.

The lawsuits allege that GHS failed in many ways. The mistakes include not adhering to national infectious disease practices and protocols; failing to ensure patient safety; making improper and untimely diagnoses; and treating the infection improperly. Berkowitz and Hanna LLC will follow this story’s progress.

Note: Berkowitz and Hanna LLC did not represent any of the parties in this case.

Photo by NIAID via Flickr.com