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Seattle Personal Injury Law Blog

Lawsuit against doctor who treated Prince is refiled

When doctors in Washington are cleared to begin practicing without the guidance and direction of instructors and industry professionals, they are entrusted to take their education, skills and experience to help their patients overcome symptoms and regain health. However, in some unfortunate circumstances, health care providers are unable to stand up to this requirement and may end up facilitating the injury or death of their patients. Often, this is due to miscommunication, fatigue or even blatant ignorance.

In a case that has made national headlines, the family of famed singer Prince, filed a negligence lawsuit against the doctor and other health care professionals who treated him in the time leading up to his death. The singer's death was ruled as an accidental overdose to the drug Fentanyl. The family claims that the doctor was aware of the singer's addiction to opioids, but did nothing to circumvent his habits which ultimately led to his death. 

Education may help to prevent premature labor

While there are undoubtedly times when women in Washington are completely unable to control the fact that they go into labor well before their due date, there are many things that can be done to actively prevent preterm labor. When women are educated about how they can facilitate a full-term and healthy pregnancy, they can provide their unborn infant with the best possible chance at enjoying a safe and comfortable pregnancy and delivery. 

According to Parenting.com, one of the first and most impactful preventative measures that pregnant women can take to protect their unborn child is to do their research in finding the highest quality prenatal care. From the moment a woman discovers that she is expecting a baby, she should work closely with a professional who understands pregnancy and childbirth. Together, with their trusted health care provider, they can implement measures that work with their individual needs and the conditions of the pregnancy. 

How do Washington metropolitan drivers rank for driving safety?

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When it comes to driving safety, where do drivers in Washington's metropolitan areas (specifically Bellevue, Tacoma, and Seattle) rank?

According to Allstate Insurance's America's Best Drivers report for 2018, not very well.

A closer look at common car accident injuries

Depending on the severity of a car accident in Washington, the injuries that victims experience can vary exponentially. There are many factors that play into how seriously injured people are including whether or not they were wearing a seatbelt, where their car was hit, what type of vehicle hit them, whether or not they had any time to react and even how healthy they were before the accident happened. 

According to the Premium News Network, even when a person does not suffer noticeable physical injury, he or she may still have to cope with the emotional damage and mental stress of the situation. However, the most common physical injuries include the following:

  • Injuries to a person's extremities such as arms and legs.
  • Superficial wounds like cuts, scrapes and bruising.
  • Injuries to a person's spinal column.
  • Head injuries including concussions and even brain injuries in severe circumstances.
  • Whiplash and other trauma related to sudden impact.

Speaking with a 911 dispatcher after your car accident

There is never a time as good as now to learn about what to do if you are involved in a car accident in Washington. When your adrenaline is pumping, you are in shock or you have been injured in a car crash, it can be difficult to think clearly and make decisions in such a stressful moment. At Elk & Elk, we have helped many car accident victims to work through the legal process of getting the compensation they deserve. 

One of the first things you will do after you have been in a car accident is to call 911. After you have assessed your injuries and the wellbeing of any other passengers, you should do what you can to make sure that your vehicle is moved to a safe place. From here, contact 911 right away. According to kidshealth.org, there is some very specific information that you should give to the dispatcher when you call. Being as articulate as possible is critical to make sure you get the help you need within a timely period. Here are some of the things you should discuss with them:

  • Location: Provide the dispatcher with as accurate of a location as you can. Look for mile markers, landmarks or other indications of where you are to give as much detail as possible. 
  • People: Tell the dispatcher about the people who were involved, as well as their conditions. 
  • Situation: Give the dispatcher information about how the accident happened, the types of vehicles involved and any present threats like fires or leaking gas.  

When should you file a medical malpractice claim?

When you receive a diagnosis from your doctor in Washington, chances are you rely on the information that he or she has provided to point you in the right direction so you can overcome any symptoms and return to full health. So, imagine your frustration when you do everything exactly as your health care provider has outlined, but you find yourself feeling worse than you felt originally. Understanding when to file a medical malpractice claim is important so you know under what circumstances you should take immediate action. 

It is important to remember that regardless of how much research you have done in finding the perfect doctor, there will undoubtedly be times when you question your doctor's judgment, have to repeat yourself or are even the victim of an unpleasant experience. Less-than-ideal situations can happen to anyone and while you may be frustrated after a subpar visit to your doctor, it may not always amount to medical malpractice. 

Facilitating your mental recovery after a car accident

You were involved in a serious car accident in Washington, but fortunately your physical injuries were not life-threatening. However, since your accident, you have faced some debilitating mental anxiety. Every time you get in your vehicle, you get a panic attack and relive your experience over and over again. Fortunately, there are things that you can do to facilitate your recovery from severe mental anxiety resulting from your car accident. 

One of the first steps in your recovery is being able to acknowledge that what you are experiencing is not normal. According to familydoctor.org, if you are experiencing symptoms like nightmares, uneasiness, irritability, disconnect or anxiety, you are probably experiencing post-traumatic stress related to your accident. In an effort to overcome these negative feelings and regain confidence while driving, here are some of the things you may consider doing:

  • Do your best to maintain your routine. Make time for things that you enjoy or that you find therapeutic and healing. 
  • Stay in touch with your doctor to monitor your progress and receive professional advice for facilitating your recovery. 
  • Keep your body active, get plenty of rest and eat healthy foods that will give your body sustainable fuel. 
  • Consider working with a counselor or therapist who can help you acknowledge, understand and process your emotions. 
  • Take a course on defensive driving and learn some skills that can help you be a more confident driver in the future. 

Patients can facilitate the path to a correct diagnosis

When a person reaches the point where discomforting symptoms are starting to interfere with their ability to do their job, get rest and feel well, one of the first things they do is contact their health care provider in Washington in search of a solution. The first step in getting treatment is for a doctor to diagnose their condition and based off of their findings, recommend a treatment plan that will hopefully abolish any remaining symptoms.

While doctors have undergone extensive educational training to prepare to make diagnoses, there are times when they make an incorrect assumption based off of having received vague or incorrect information or misunderstanding the person's symptoms. In fact, there are even times when doctors may confuse patients or not listen well enough to the description of what is being experienced before making an incorrect diagnosis. 

Where do Washington drivers rank for distracted driving?

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When it comes to distracted driving in the United States, things seem to be only getting worse.

A recent study by ZenDrive, a company that analyzes driver behavior using phone sensors and provides insights on that data, recently analyzed 100 billion driver miles. The results of that study are telling: Distracted driving is a bigger problem than most people realize. And it's much more common than government statistics reveal.

Injury prevention during your pregnancy

You have recently found out that you are expecting a baby. Your excitement is growing as you recognize the exciting changes taking place in your body. Protecting your unborn child and preventing any injury from compromising his or her wellbeing is critical throughout pregnancy. At Elk & Elk, we have helped many families in Washington to learn about the dangers of birth injuries.

Depending on your lifestyle, certain habits or hobbies that you enjoy normally could actually be reckless and even dangerous when you are pregnant. Learning about what behaviors, activities and habits are okay to continue is imperative to helping you make responsible decisions while you are carrying an unborn baby. Your doctor can help you identify which activities you should modify or suspend indefinitely until your pregnancy is complete. 

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