Concierge medicine began in 2000, and it is available in some North Carolina cities. The largest group concierge medicine practice is MDVIP, which has about 800 physicians in 41 states. Those seeking care from MDVIP physicians pay a membership fee annually. In exchange, patients are promised quick access to their doctor and exceptional care because physicians limit their patient load to ensure adequate time for personalized care.
In a recent highly publicized example of medical error, a Dallas hospital sent home a seriously ill patient who had a travel history to areas of West Africa where the Ebola outbreak has taken thousands of lives. This serious medical error may have been caused by a flaw in the hospital's software system that did not relay the travel history to all medical personnel. These kinds of medical errors can also happen in North Carolina.
A North Carolina man was awarded $1.5 million by a jury after a surgery left him blind in one eye. An ophthalmologist and two medical practices were named in the lawsuit after an alleged drug mix-up during a cataract surgery in 2008.
Residents of North Carolina may have heard that the family of a Russian boxer who received injuries in a bout intends to file a lawsuit for medical malpractice after it was declared that he is bedridden and may never walk again. Magomed Abdusalamov competed in a vigorous fight in Madison Square Garden on Nov. 2, 2013. During the fight, Abdusalamov suffered a broken hand and jaw. His competitor landed 312 punches, some of which hit the fighter's head.
North Carolina medical patients may want to know the story behind a formerly active 72-year-old left in a vegetative state after his cardiac surgeon allegedly walked off during the operation to attend a luncheon. The man's family was seeking answers about the apparent medical malpractice, in which, they claim, the surgeon left an unqualified physician's assistant to close up the patient's open chest cavity. Complications arose, and the cardiologist was called back from the luncheon, which was up to 30 minutes away. The patient's heart stopped, and serious and irreversible brain damage was the result.
An investigative reporting team joined with a team of producers and reporters from Cox Media Group held outlets to produce an analysis of a huge federal database of government payouts for health-related Department of Veterans Affairs lawsuits and settlements. The result was the discovery of almost 4,500 cases of alleged medical malpractice that the VA settled or lost outright across the U.S. for the preceding decade. Taxpayers reportedly paid out $845 million in these cases.
North Carolina hospitals may join the ranks of facilities offering robot-assisted surgery, but one doctor in Colorado stood accused of promoting the futuristic option to the exclusion of other, possibly safer, methods. Medical malpractice suits could arise from the 10 patients treated by that surgeon using the robotic method between 2008 and 2011. An April 2013 complaint made by the Colorado Medical Board stated that five patients suffered punctured or torn arteries, two had objects temporarily left inside them after surgery and others suffered nerve damage. One patient died and another required cardiopulmonary resuscitation, according to the complaint, which charged the Denver doctor with 14 counts of unprofessional conduct. Included were allegations that he sometimes did not advise patients on alternatives to robotic surgery.
Many North Carolina residents may have already heard about the medical malpractice case that occurred recently in Ohio involving a mistakenly discarded donor organ. A family has initiated a lawsuit against the University of Toledo Medical Center claiming that hospital negligence led to one of its nurses throwing away a kidney that had been donated by a 21-year-old brother to his 24-year-old sister, who was suffering from end-stage renal disease.