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New York City Personal Injury Law Blog

Reviewing average doctor visit times

Going to doctor is not decision that most in New York make lightly. You likely spend a day in bed when you feel sick, hoping that the rest will allow your body to combat whatever illness you have. Only if rest and over-the-counter medications do not work do you typically then schedule a doctor's appointment. During that visit, your expectation should be that the doctor will dedicate all the time that is needed to correctly diagnose your condition and begin treatment. It is for this very reason why many come to us here at Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, P.C. confused as to why their doctor visits were so brief. 

Information shared in Medscape's 2016 Physician Compensation Report showed that most doctors (between 40-41 percent) spent only an average of 13-20 minutes with their patients. That statistic may seem shocking, given that during that time, a doctor should ask questions about your medical history, conduct a thorough review of your body systems, order (and analyze) diagnostic tests, and then arrive at a diagnosis. Effectively accomplishing all of that in such a short time frame certainly seems difficult. 

What do you really know about sexual harassment?

If you are like other New York residents, you may have Hollywood's depiction of sexual harassment in your mind. That image probably involves a male boss making unwanted advances to his female secretary behind the closed door of his office while she attempts to politely decline in order to keep her job.

Sure, that happens, but there is so much more to sexual harassment. The first thing you need to know is that women are not the only victims. Second, outright or veiled requests for sex are not the only ways in which an employee may be sexually harassed.

What services are available through workers' comp?

If you have the misfortune of being injured at work in New York, workers’ compensation insurance typically will apply to help compensate you for income lost due to your injury. Along with monetary compensation, you may be entitled to receive vocational and medical rehabilitation as well. A lesser-known benefit available through the worker’s comp program is aid from social services.

According to the state Workers’ Compensation Board, social workers are available to help injured workers and their families deal with the stress of the situation and work toward recovery. Whether an injury is treatable or permanent, disability can have a huge impact on family members and their individual roles due to changes in finances, social status and pain management.

Knowing how to spot abuse or neglect in a nursing home setting

Making the decision to entrust the care of a family member to a nursing home can be a difficult process. If you have a loved one who is no longer capable of caring for his or herself, you might have searched through dozens of care facilities before locating an establishment to provide the necessary care.

After choosing a facility, you will likely wish to look after your loved one and ensure that he or she receives a certain standard of treatment. If you begin to suspect that the facility is culpable of negligence or abuse, you might be wondering how to protect him or her from unnecessary suffering.

Hours-of-services rules for drivers transporting passengers

Most might view driver fatigue to be a problem that only traditional motorists in New York face, not those that drive for a living. After all, being behind the wheel is a commercial driver's livelihood; why would he or she risk that by not being at his or her best (both mentally and physically) at all times? Yet one might argue that such drivers are at an even greater risk to push themselves beyond their normal limits while behind the wheel in order to maximize the number of hours they can work. This may be the reason why commercial vehicle accidents (including bus accidents) continue to be a problem. Indeed, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reports that 4,440 large trucks and buses were involved in fatal accidents in 2015 alone. 

To curtail the potential of commercial vehicle driver fatigue, federal regulations have been established limiting the number of hours such drivers can work. Per the FMCSA, the hours-of-service regulations for those transporting passengers include: 

  • Not driving more than 10 hours after eight consecutive hours off duty
  • Not driving at all after having been on duty 15 hours (after having spent eight consecutive hours off duty)
  • Not driving more than 60/70 hours a period of 7/8 consecutive days

Wrongful death lawsuits vs. survivorship actions

When residents of Manhattan lose a loved one due to the negligence of another, most would likely assume that there only course of action to recover any sort of financial compensation for that loss would be to file a wrongful death lawsuit. However, there is indeed another method through which one can sue for damages due to wrongful death: aa survivorship action. Both methods offer the opportunity to assign accountability to a negligent party over one's death, and according to the St. John's Law Review, both methods can be combined in a single case. 

The main difference between a wrongful death lawsuit and a survivorship action is the intended beneficiaries of such actions. Section 5-4.1 of New York's Estate, Powers and Trust Law is very clear in stating that any award arising from a wrongful death action is meant to benefit only one's distributees (or beneficiaries). The benefit of a survivorship action is meant to be the victim of whatever incident prompted the action (or, more appropriately, his or her estate). 

Reviewing the Glasgow Coma Scale

Immediately after learning that your loved one has experienced a brain injury in New York City, your first question is likely to be to what extent can you expect him or her to recover. While providing you with a definite answer may be impossible, the clinicians that treat him or her may be outline certain clinical indicators that can at least offer you an idea of what to expect. Why is such information important in the moment? As many of those that we here at Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, P.C. can attest to, knowing that may influence your actions when dealing with the aftermath of your loved one's injury. 

Your loved one's levels of response immediately following his or her injury might be able to offer a clue as to the potential outlook of his or her case. The Glasgow Coma Scale has been developed to help indicate the extent of a brain injury before clinical tests are able to confirm it. Per the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the GCS takes the results of three tests into account: 

  • Eye opening response 
  • Verbal response 
  • Motor response

Are you an aggressive driver?

People can express aggressive behaviors in many different ways. When people think of aggressive drivers, images of red-faced individuals filled with road rage may pop into their heads. However, there are many forms of aggressive driving, and you may carry out some of those actions yourself.

Road rage and aggressive acts can easily lead to car accidents. Because you certainly want to avoid being the cause of such a serious incident, you may want to learn about actions considered aggressive and how you could help yourself avoid participating in potentially dangerous behaviors while behind the wheel.

Drug safety: FDA, doctors must weigh the risks

New York consumers may wonder about the safety of taking certain drugs, even if prescribed by their doctor, when they hear about drug warnings, recalls and lawsuits over a drug with unintended patient results. You may be surprised to learn that the federal government’s Food and Drug Administration has no power to initiate a drug recall. The agency can issue alerts and warnings, as it has recently with the diabetes medication canagliflozin (Invokana and Invokamet), but recalls must be made by the manufacturer. A typical consumer’s reaction might be something like, “Why was this drug approved in the first place?” But the answer is complicated.

Drugs must gain FDA approval before they can be sold in the U.S. The makers first must conduct lab and animal tests to learn how it works and if it is likely to perform well and safely in people. If they deem it promising, drug makers will then perform clinical trials. These test results go next to the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, where they undergo independent review by a team of specialists that includes physicians, pharmacologists, chemists and additional scientists. If the group determines that the benefits outweigh the risks, the drug receives approval.

How a New York judge may calculate car accident damages

When a New York driver is negligent and it causes you injury, there's no reason you should bear the full brunt of the expenses associated with the incident. Let's say you were driving to your child's sporting event and another vehicle veered across the yellow line, smashing into the side of your car. There was nothing you could do about it because traffic was heavy and fast-moving at the time and there was no safe way to switch road positions at the time.

You and your child suffered injuries, and both of you have been having trouble sleeping since the crash, which is understandable since such accidents are often emotionally traumatizing. Your child has missed school and you have had to call off work to go to physical therapy sessions and medical appointments. Most of your injuries have healed but your child has had cognitive trouble due to a concussion and you have lingering pain in your knee, which sustained major blunt force trauma upon impact.

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