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  • When plastic surgery goes wrong?

    Below view of surgeonsIn 2012, over 14.6 million plastic surgery procedures were performed in the U.S., according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons. Many people here in Illinois undergo these procedures to improve their appearance or restore physical function. Sadly, as surgical error lawyers in Chicago Heights can attest, cosmetic surgery doesn’t always produce these desired results. Sometimes, patients are instead left with painful, permanent or life-threatening complications.

    Unwanted outcomes

    As Healthline explains, plastic surgery errors can cause various cosmetic issues. These include bruising, scarring and final results that fall below patient expectations. In severe cases, patients may suffer from disfigurement due to mistakes during the procedure or complications afterward. These unintended cosmetic changes may have lasting psychological effects.

    Plastic surgery also exposes patients to various complications associated with invasive procedures. Hematoma, or localized blood pooling, and internal bleeding are both risks during many surgeries. Another common problem, surgical site infection, can threaten the area operated on and the patient’s overall health. Finally, anesthesia complications can have serious consequences, including stroke, heart attack and even death.

    Additionally, depending on the procedure, patients may face other unique risks. As any surgical error lawyers in Chicago Heights know, these include:

    • Organ damage — organ perforation can occur during many plastic surgery procedures. The equipment used to perform liposuction may especially put patients at risk for organ damage.
    • Deep vein thrombosis — some procedures raise the risk of DVT, which involves the formation of a blood clot in deep veins. This clot can break free to cause pulmonary embolism, or blockage of an artery in the lungs, which can be deadly.
    • Nerve damage — this can cause tingling, pain, loss of sensation, weakness and even muscle paralysis. Nerve damage may occur when nerves are cut, cauterized or stretched during surgery.

    Many of these cosmetic surgery complications can have life-changing consequences. Besides significant medical expenses, victims may face emotional suffering, physical health problems or functional restrictions. When these outcomes result from substandard medical care, injury victims may be able to pursue compensation.

    Proving negligence

    Determining whether medical care was substandard is often challenging, since doctors usually must make subjective decisions based on unique circumstances. Generally, victims must prove a doctor provided negligent medical care through the testimony of an expert witness. In Illinois, this witness must be licensed in the same discipline as the treating medical professional. The witness also must devote significant attention to this discipline.

    Given these criteria, finding a witness and proving a surgical oversight or error represents malpractice can be difficult. Considering this, injury victims may benefit from seeking the assistance of surgical error lawyers in Chicago Heights. These attorneys may be able to offer advice on documenting the claim and pursuing appropriate compensation.

  • Using ergonomics to reduce injury risk to baggage handlers

    Aircraft loading freightIn December 2009, life changed forever for John, a 34-year-old baggage handler at Chicago’s Midway Airport. He was working hard to keep up with the holiday travel rush. His team was dealing with an unprecedented volume of bags. As John lifted a 55-pound suitcase from a belt loader and placed it in the cargo hold of a plane, he ruptured three discs in his back. He spent a year on temporary total disability and eventually needed to switch careers.

    Handling baggage improperly can cause severe injury

    Baggage handling can be a dangerous job, as Cicero work injury attorneys know. Lifting and transferring heavy bags often leads to severe injury if handlers do not take proper safety precautions. Recent ergonomic guidelines published by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration can help ramp workers cut their risk of an accident in the workplace.

    What is ergonomics?

    Ergonomics is the science of moving safely and efficiently while performing job tasks or other activities. It is a popular technique among many groups of people, from professional athletes to office workers. It is especially helpful for people who must move and lift constantly on the job. Training in proper ergonomics can cut the danger of disabling workplace injuries by as much as 80 percent, according to OSHA statistics.

    Why do baggage handlers need ergonomics?

    Baggage handlers are in special need of ergonomics because their job involves moving heavy objects at a fast pace in a high-pressure environment. Many times a day, they must handle suitcases and bags of unknown weight. High bag turnover and tight deadlines can contribute to unsafe practices and serious baggage handling injuries if workers are not trained in ergonomic techniques.

    Ergonomic tips for ramp staff

    Ramp workers can stay safer by paying attention to all of the following points:

    • Never lift while twisting or reaching out.
    • Place carts and belt loaders at a consistent height to avoid stooping or stretching.
    • Label all heavy suitcases with easily visible tags.
    • Take regular rest breaks and change working positions when possible.
    • Report all injuries to a supervisor at once, even if they initially seem minor.

    Cicero work injury attorneys are aware that these simple practices can decrease the chance of job-related trauma.

    According to the Federal Aviation Administration, airports in America handle more than 50,000 flights every day. Ramp workers and luggage handlers are on the cutting edge of the current travel boom. People who have been hurt while working at an airport should consider speaking with Cicero work injury attorneys about their case.

  • When does Social Security determine a condition to be disabling?

    Muscular Man with BackacheSocial Security Disability benefits provide support to people who cannot work because they suffer from disabling conditions. However, as Berwyn Social Security lawyers know, qualifying for benefits can be challenging even for people with highly debilitating conditions. In some cases, people with severe impairments even have their claims denied. This is because Social Security uses an unusual and somewhat exclusive definition of disability.

    Medical criteria

    Social Security only considers physical or psychological impairments disabling if they meet set medical standards. A disabling impairment must have a medically verifiable basis. In other words, objective evidence must point to some physiological or psychological factor that causes the disability. The condition also must be expected to prevent the victim from working for at least 12 months. Short-term conditions are not eligible for SSD benefits, no matter how debilitating they prove.

    Social Security’s “Blue Book” of impairments contains lists of medical conditions that frequently meet these criteria. If a person suffers from a listed condition and fulfills related requirements, the condition qualifies as disabling. In these cases, as Berwyn Social Security lawyers could explain, the condition is found disabling based exclusively on medical evidence.

    In all other cases, Social Security evaluates how a specific condition restricts a person’s ability to work gainfully. If work is not feasible, given the person’s symptoms and functional limitations, the condition may qualify as disabling.

    Functional limitations

    Social Security uses two measures to judge whether people can work despite a potentially disabling physical or mental conditions. First, Social Security checks whether the person is currently engaging in “substantial gainful activity.” For individuals who aren’t blind, this is work with monthly income greater than $1,090. If a person can perform SGA, Social Security will not consider the person’s condition disabling.

    If a person is not performing substantial work, Social Security assesses whether the person could resume past work or take up new work. To do this, Social Security evaluates various personal factors. As most Berwyn Social Security lawyers can verify, these including the following variables:

    • Age
    • Extent of education
    • Work experience
    • Job-related skills
    • Functional restrictions

    Based on these factors, Social Security determines what level of a work a person can perform. If a person can perform the level of work he or she performed previously, the person is not considered disabled.

    If a person cannot return to any past jobs, Social Security evaluates whether other forms of employment are available. Claims examiners use a set of medical-vocational guidelines to determine whether a person can perform or learn new jobs. If a person’s unique background and limitations effectively preclude employment, the person’s condition may be considered disabling.

  • Do I need a lawyer after a car accident?

    pIntersectionCrash_shutterstock_182023208Do I need a lawyer after a car accident? This is a common question that many motorists ask themselves after being involved in a collision. Some may wish to avoid the stigma associated with seeking a claim after minor accidents, even if they were injured. Others may simply be unsure of their rights or if they have any recourse after a collision. An accident lawyer in Chicago sees many additional situations in which accident victims are unsure if their accident warrants a visit to an attorney. In most cases, the answer to this very important question is yes. Consider the following reasons why:

    Legal knowledge is key

    While many laws in U.S. states are similar, there can be some very big differences from state to state. An attorney who works in North Dakota but who was injured in a collision in Illinois will often find an accident lawyer in Chicago to represent them. The attorney from North Dakota obviously has a good understanding of law, but they often know that their best chance at receiving a full settlement is to have representation from someone who works with Illinois laws on a daily basis.

    Personal injury lawsuits are usually subject to statute of limitation laws. These laws state that an injured party has a certain amount of time in which to file their claim. In Illinois, motorists have two years from the date of an accident in which to file a claim against the offending party or insurer. Filing of a claim is different and separate from sending a demand letter asking for settlement.

    Additional requirements must often be met as well prior to filing a lawsuit. If unrepresented victims do not adhere to these rules, they may miss the opportunity to sue those who are responsible for their injuries.

    Experience handling insurers

    According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 2,362,000 individuals injured in motor vehicle accidents in 2012. Another 3,950,000 crashes caused only property damage that year. With these high rates of accidents, insurers and attorneys must often interact and over time that interaction breeds familiarity. There is power in familiarity, and both insurance companies and attorneys know this. After years of experience, attorneys see patterns and learn the policies and practices of many insurance companies. This is valuable information that they can use to benefit their clients. On the other hand, when insurers work with attorneys, they often drop many of their tactics used on unrepresented accident victims and instead quickly begin business.

    No more hassling

    Insurance companies will often do their best to railroad unrepresented individuals into giving up their rights and signing settlement docs almost immediately following a crash. When accident victims let insurers know that they have representation, this tactic immediately ceases and insurers must legally go through the attorney for all contact.

    For those who are dealing with debilitating injuries and the necessary doctors appointments, physical therapy, and chiropractic care, handling the medical bills and negotiations with the insurance company is a lot to bear. In many cases, it is too much and accident victims simply give in to the demands that are placed on them and settle their claims for far less than they are truly worth. Premature settlement can be devastating for someone with accident-related chronic pain or other lifelong injuries that require years of treatment.

    An attorney takes this pressure off of the injured. In many cases, accident victims can request that all communications regarding the accident go through their attorney, including inquiries from the victims own health insurance and medical providers. Lawyers often monitor medical insurance payments, pay medical bills, negotiate lower medical costs, and other general tasks associated with managing life and treatment following an accident. When this occurs, the patient’s main focus turns to healing, not to unpaid medical bills and frequent calls regarding settlement.

    Ready for court

    If an accident victim and insurance company fail to reach a settlement, the injured motorist has two options: drop the claim or file a lawsuit in civil court. This is an intense process that can be confusing and overwhelming for individuals to face on their own. While the court will do everything it can to help those representing themselves, they cannot slow down the lawsuit or give much extra time to unrepresented individuals because of the large number of cases the courts must oversee as well as fairness to those being sued.

    When an accident lawyer in Chicago is involved, court is a familiar place which they attend on a regular basis. Their staff know the often confusing and tedious administrative rules about filing documents, court form requirements, and other issues that can make even filing one document in the court a long, drawn out process. They are also familiar with judges and their preferences. When accident victims choose to go to court with an attorney representing their interests, they have an inside player who knows what needs to be done and when, as well as how to do it to reap the best possible results.

    Who really needs an attorney?

    Those who have been injured in an accident should immediately seek the advice of an accident lawyer in Chicago. Additionally, anyone whose property was damaged in a crash should also contact an attorney to ensure that they understand the law, their rights and responsibilities, and what they should expect from the situation. Even though many individuals feel that this may not be necessary, it is the only way for motorists to know they have been fairly treated and fully reimbursed for their lost property and injuries.

  • 3 ways doctors can prevent cerebral palsy

    Young beautiful woman with a newborn baby after birthCerebral palsy is a chronic condition that can impair muscle control, coordination, sensory perception and learning abilities. This disorder develops as a result of damage to the brain early in life. As Joliet birth injury attorneys could explain, this damage may occur during pregnancy, childbirth or shortly afterward. In many cases, the disorder may be prevented if doctors take the following measures during pregnancy or birth.

    Checking Rh compatibility

    Most people genetically inherit a protein called Rh-factor, which is found on the surface of red blood cells. When a mother lacks Rh factor and carries a baby who has it, the baby is at risk for Rh disease. This condition occurs when the mother’s immune system identifies the baby’s blood cells as foreign and attacks them. Rh disease may cause various harmful outcomes, including jaundice and brain damage, which can both result in cerebral palsy.

    A doctor can prevent Rh disease by injecting a pregnant woman with a blood product. This product stops the mother’s immune system from becoming sensitized to the baby’s blood cells. Mothers typically must receive this product 28 weeks into their pregnancies. Unfortunately, if a doctor fails to perform blood tests or administer the product, the baby may develop cerebral palsy.

    Stopping infections

    Doctors can also prevent cerebral palsy by addressing infections that cause or contribute to the disorder. These infections include:

    • Rubella, toxoplasmosis and cytomegalovirus — these can directly cause brain damage and cerebral palsy.
    • Infections of the placental membranes — according to research, these may contribute to cerebral palsy.
    • Reproductive tract or urinary tract infections — these may increase the likelihood of premature delivery, which greatly raises the risk of cerebral palsy.

    During pregnancy, doctors should remain alert to signs of these and other infections, as any Joliet birth injury attorneys would note. Often, intervention during pregnancy can prevent complications associated with prenatal infections. After the birth, doctors should also perform vaccinations against other diseases known to cause cerebral palsy, such as meningitis.

    Preventing asphyxia

    Oxygen deprivation can result in brain injuries during delivery, which can cause cerebral palsy. Asphyxia may occur for various reasons, including prolonged delivery, excessive bleeding, umbilical cord problems and maternal shock. During delivery, it is essential for doctors to monitor early warning signs of these issues and take action to prevent further complications.

    Sadly, in many cases, cerebral palsy may develop because of risk factors that should have been addressed during pregnancy or the delivery. When this occurs, parents have the right to seek compensation on behalf of the child through a medical malpractice lawsuit. Joliet birth injury attorneys may be able to further advise parents of their rights following substandard care during pregnancy or childbirth.

  • How safe are crude oil trains?

    Train Freight transportation platform - Cargo transitThe North American oil boom has generated jobs, revenue and savings for consumers. As many people in Illinois know, it has also resulted in more oil-bearing train traffic. From 2010 to 2014, the number of cars carrying crude oil rose from 29,605 to 493,126, according to The Los Angeles Times. Unfortunately, as personal injury lawyers in Elgin are aware, as traffic has grown, crude oil train accidents have also increased.

    Frequent, dangerous crashes

    In the last month alone, four crude oil train crashes have occurred in the U.S. and Canada, including one here in Illinois. According to CBS News, the Illinois derailment occurred five miles outside of Galena. Five cars carrying crude oil caught on fire, and firefighters spent more than two days putting out the blaze. Fortunately, no one was hurt.

    As the Los Angeles Times reports, 13 similar accidents have occurred in the U.S. and Canada since the Lac-Megantic disaster in 2013. During that catastrophic accident, a crude oil train crashed into the Canadian city, killing 47 people. This was the last crude oil train accident in the U.S. or Canada that resulted in fatalities. Still, as personal injury lawyers in Elgin know, critics worry about the potential for more deadly crashes.

    Accident risk factors

    Various factors may contribute to crude oil train accidents. According to CNBC, some safety experts point to excessive travel speeds and unsafe train car designs. The National Transportation Safety Board has heard testimony that even newer oil car models might prove unsafe during crashes. Additionally, The Los Angeles Times cites the following potential causes of train accidents and derailments:

    • Human error — this was a factor in 38 percent of 2014 crude oil train crashes. Operator health issues or fatigue may exacerbate the risk of these crashes.
    • Car design — crude oil cars are often outfitted with shields, thermal protection and enhanced valves. Still, if these measures aren’t properly designed or implemented, spills and fires may occur after derailment.
    • Railroad construction — the continuous welded tracks used today change size in response to temperature changes. Severe weather may cause significant expansion or contraction of the railroad lines, raising the risk of crashes.

    One former NTSB chairman worries crude oil train wrecks have become the nation’s leading safety issue. Unfortunately, the oil and gas industry appears undeterred by the safety risks. Without regulatory interference, these accidents may continue occurring frequently.

    Recourse for victims

    When oil train crashes occur due to preventable factors, accident victims may have legal recourse. Victims who suffer injuries may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, wage loss, long-term disablement and emotional suffering. These individuals may benefit from meeting with personal injury lawyers in Elgin to better understand their legal rights and options.

  • How to get SSD for early onset Alzheimer’s

    Depressed Man On BenchAlzheimer’s is classified as early onset when it develops before the age of 65. This neurological condition can have various detrimental effects on short-term memory, communication skills, reasoning and behavior. Since Alzheimer’s is degenerative, victims often gradually lose the ability to work and even care for themselves. When this occurs, victims may be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits, as any Lake County SSD lawyers can confirm.

    Evaluating Alzheimer’s

    Victims of early onset Alzheimer’s may receive SSD benefits by proving they meet criteria in the Social Security Administration’s “Blue Book.” The book includes a listing for organic mental disorders, which claims examiners use when evaluating claims involving any form of dementia.

    Early onset Alzheimer’s may be considered disabling if victims can document one recognized symptom of reduced cognitive function. Acceptable symptoms include memory problems, IQ loss, personality changes and loss of awareness of time and place. In addition to one of these symptoms, people seeking SSD benefits must document two of the following issues:

    • Inability to act appropriately in social environments
    • Difficulty maintaining focus and pace to complete tasks
    • Limited ability to perform regular daily activities, including self-care
    • Recurrent episodes in which symptoms become markedly worse

    As any Lake County SSD lawyers know, people seeking SSD benefits must support their diagnoses and claims with objective evidence. For victims of early onset Alzheimer’s, this evidence could include laboratory tests or brains scans that reveal the condition. Statements from medical professionals and personal sources can also help establish the symptoms and functional limitations an applicant experiences.

    If a person doesn’t meet the relevant Blue Book terms, the SSA may find that the person’s impairments “equal” those listed. The SSA also may award a medical-vocational allowance based on a direct assessment of the applicant’s ability to work. People who may qualify for benefits through either process should provide extensive medical evidence. Applicants who may receive medical-vocational allowances also should furnish detailed information about their educations and work experience.

    Expedited processing available

    As most Lake County SSD lawyers know, early onset Alzheimer’s qualifies for the SSA’s Compassionate Allowances program. This initiative provides quicker claim processing for conditions that almost always qualify for SSD benefits. In Compassionate Allowances claims, minimal evidence is needed to support a final decision. Moreover, the SSA offers expedited processing and approval of these claims.

    Claim approval isn’t a certainty for people who suffer from conditions included in the CAL program, however. Applicants must meet general non-medical criteria regarding earnings and work history to qualify for SSD benefits. Additionally, applicants must provide adequate documentation to establish the existence and severity of the condition. If medical or supporting evidence is inadequate, the SSA may deny the claim.

  • 5 technologies that hospitals should use to prevent medical errors

    medicalA recent report found in the Journal of Patient Safety states that between 210,000 and 440,000 patients die in U.S. hospitals every year due to preventable medical error. This figure would make medical mistakes more deadly to Americans than both heart disease and cancer. A personal injury lawyer in Chicago understands that figures this high are unacceptable and must be brought down as soon as possible.

    Technology is one avenue to which many in the healthcare profession are turning to create devises or systems that limit the amount of harm medical staff and doctors can do to patients. The following five technologies should be implemented in every hospital in the U.S. to limit medical error.

    1. Iris scan

    Iris scan technology is one of the most accurate identity authentication systems in existence today. It is used throughout the world in many applications and has recently emerged as a means of identifying patients in healthcare settings. Iris scanning is not the same as retinal scanning, which requires physical contact and is now seldom used. When iris scanning is performed, the system scans they eye using video camera technology and near infrared illumination to capture the intricate details of the unique patterns found in the iris. Using complex mathematical and statistical algorithms, it codes the pattern to immediately identify patients.

    When used in a healthcare setting, this technology can be used to ensure that patients are who they claim to be and may help identify incoherent or unconscious patients in emergency departments. This can be invaluable in giving emergency room doctors access to patient charts and records, and could help prevent potential drug interactions or allergies. It may also be used to prevent patients from receiving treatment meant for another person, even if much of their identifying information is similar.

    1. Sponge detection

    In the medical profession, there are certain serious errors that are so egregious, they should never occur. These errors are known as “never events” and occur as many as twelve times a day. Retained foreign objects, including sponges, are incredibly common never events. Patients with retained sponges may experience life-threatening infections, crippling pain, and death if not promptly treated.

    In many operating rooms around the country, surgical sponges are manually counted. This practice is severely prone to human error. To help reduce rates of this never event, many hospitals are investing in bar-coded or RFID-chipped surgical sponges. Instead of keeping tally in their heads, surgical staff simply scan a sponge’s barcode or pass the RFID-chipped sponge in front of a sensor and the computer keeps count and knows exactly which sponges need to be accounted for.

    According to a study found in the Annals of Surgery, the use of automated counting using bar-coded surgical sponges greatly improves the detection of missing sponges during surgery. The system is also easy to use and well-tolerated by surgical staff members.

    1. Electronic health records

    According to HealthIT.gov, electronic health records are digital versions of patients’ paper medical charts. These records allow doctors to have real-time information that they can use to make important healthcare decisions with and for their patients. The systems are secure and may help doctors get a more complete view of a patient’s health history than they would receive from paper charts alone. Doctors can more easily become aware of dangerous signs or symptoms, drug interactions, and other medical errors by using these systems

    EHRs are seen as such an important part of patient care that they were mandated by the federal government with the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Heath Act in 2008. The law states that all hospitals and offices must adopt and successfully demonstrate meaningful use of EHR technology by 2015 in order to avoid Medicare penalties.

    1. Bar code technology and eMAR

    One of the greatest contributors to medical errors is medication mistakes. A new system that many hospitals are using throughout the nation uses bar code technology in conjunction with an electronic medication administration record to keep track of the medications patients are receiving, when and at what dosage. This greatly reduces medication administration and transcription errors. A personal injury lawyer in Chicago may see many of these deadly errors throughout his or her career.

    Patients simply receive a barcoded wristband that nurses scan prior to administering a drug. The nurse then scans the drug and the eMAR system checks for adverse drug interactions, dosage errors, and whether the correct patient is receiving the correct medication. Many systems also alert nurses when medications are supposed to be administered.

    1. Computerized Physician Order Entry

    Technology is used to reduce prescription errors in other ways. Computerized Physician Order Entry is a system that many hospitals and offices throughout the nation have embraced. This technology allows doctors to electronically order medications, tests and procedures directly using the hospital’s main system. This eliminates any problems associated with illegible handwriting, which can be incredibly dangerous given the number of prescriptions with dangerously similar names. Moreover, these systems require doctors to enter every field before it will be accepted into the system. Therefore prescriptions cannot be ordered unless they state dosage, route, and frequency.

    If all hospitals simply implemented these five technologies, the rates of medical errors are likely to significantly decrease. Illinois patients who have been injured by a medical error should contact a personal injury lawyer in Chicago for assistance. With their help, patients can receive compensation for their injuries and help ensure that other families do not experience the same trauma at the hands of a medical professional.

  • Getting SSD benefits for asbestos exposure

    Asbestos is a set of minerals that occur naturally in the form of fiber bundles. Today, asbestos is recognized as a health hazard and closely regulated. However, asbestos has been used in various products, and as Social Security attorneys in Arlington Heights understand, exposure can still occur. This risk is especially high among construction and shipyard workers.

    According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, no level of asbestos exposure is safe. Each incidence of exposure can cause lung disease or scarring, which can lead to difficulty breathing. Exposure over just a few days can cause mesothelioma. Given these serious health effects, asbestos exposure victims frequently may qualify for Social Security Disability benefits.

    Establishing disablement

    The Social Security Administration considers many asbestos-related diseases disabling. These diseases are listed in the “Blue Book” of impairments. Individuals who suffer from listed conditions automatically qualify for benefits on a medical level. The following lung conditions appear in the Blue Book:

    • Malignant mesothelioma. This cancer is considered disabling if victims document mesothelioma of the pleura or mediastinum tumors that treatment cannot control.
    • Lung cancer. The listing includes small-cell carcinoma, severe cases of non-small cell carcinoma and certain cases of superior sulcus cancer.
    • Pulmonary insufficiency. The SSA uses lung capacity tests to determine whether asbestosis or other lung-restricting diseases qualify as disabling.

    Asbestos-related diseases that affect other parts of the body may also appear in the Blue Book. Exposure victims must provide thorough documentation to prove they suffer from these conditions and meet associated requirements. A diagnosis, medical history and objective testing can help establish the condition. In claims involving cancer, biopsy results and notes from surgical procedures are also appropriate forms of evidence.

    Receiving allowances

    People who don’t meet Blue Book criteria may also qualify for SSD benefits by receiving medical-vocational allowances. As Social Security attorneys in Arlington Heights can explain, allowances are awarded based on a person’s ability to work.

    When granting allowances, the SSA considers every health problem that an individual suffers from. The SSA also considers the individual’s unique skills, work experience and educational level. An allowance is awarded if these factors prevent the person from working gainfully in any capacity.

    Meeting non-medical criteria

    Unfortunately, victims of disabling medical conditions aren’t always guaranteed SSD benefits. As most Social Security attorneys in Arlington Heights can attest, these individuals also must fulfill non-medical requirements.

    First, SSD applicants must have paid adequate amounts of Social Security taxes. People with limited earnings or little recent work history may not qualify as “insured.” Second, applicants cannot engage in work with monthly income over $1,090. The SSA makes an exception for blind individuals. In all other cases, this level of work precludes a person from receiving benefits.


  • When is nursing home considered medical neglect?

    お見舞いMany families opt to take their elderly loved ones to nursing homes due to the perceived level of medical care offered in these facilities. As individuals age, they are faced with unique medical needs that most families are simply not equipped to handle. Nursing homes may even make it a point to advertise and emphasize their skill at caring for the medical needs of the elderly.

    Unfortunately, many of these homes fail to provide their patients with even some of their most basic medical needs. A DuPage medical errors attorney understands that in these cases and a few others, nursing homes may be guilty of nursing home neglect as well as medical neglect.

    Nursing home neglect vs medical neglect

    According to the Nursing Home Abuse Guide, nursing homes are negligent when they are guilty of the following main types of neglect:

    • Emotional – ignoring, isolating or yelling at patients
    • Personal hygiene – patients do not receive clean laundry, baths, or other types of hygienic attention.
    • Basic needs – a person’s basic needs, such as food, water, and a clean place to live, are not provided.
    • Medical – Patients do not receive the medical care, including preventative care, which they need.

    Medical neglect is only one type of neglect in which nursing homes can engage. If a patient’s basic needs for food and clean bedding are not being met, the home is guilty of nursing home neglect, but not medical neglect. Conversely, a patient can be located in a pristine room, bathed daily and dressed well, but if they are not receiving the treatment they need for their medical conditions due to cost cutting at their facility, they are being neglected medically.

    Not dependent on facility type

    A DuPage medical errors attorney should understand the difference between medical neglect and medical malpractice. Unlike with medical malpractice, which requires a lapse in care from a certified healthcare worker, medical neglect occurs simply when proper medical care is withheld. Although some nursing homes are filled with skilled, certified nurses and doctors, the vast majority of facilities today are staffed by simple care workers who help residents through their daily tasks. Moreover, most of these workers would claim to be overworked and underpaid. These situations may easily lead to instances of severe nursing home neglect and medical neglect.

    Those with loved ones who have been medically neglected at their nursing homes should contact a DuPage medical errors attorney immediately for assistance. With their help, victims may receive compensation for the damages they have sustained in connection with their neglect, including pain and suffering.

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Our firm handles workers' compensation and personal injury claims in Chicago, Berwyn, Joliet, Cicero, Waukegan, Chicago Heights, Elgin, Aurora, Oak Park, Oak Lawn, Schaumburg, Bolingbrook, Glendale Heights, Aurora, Niles, Schaumburg, Arlington Heights, Naperville, Plainfield and all of Cook, DuPage, Lake, Will, McHenry, LaSalle, Kankakee, McLean and Peoria Counties.