It should be understood by the public that advanced nations have strict guidelines for the approval of medical procedures and/or medication uses. The general process for such approval involves a multi-step process. The first step in the process is for the drug, device or procedure to be approved by the Government as being legal to use. This is a very basic step which in no way assures success of anything.

Medical Doctors have much been in the news lately because of the COVID- 19 pandemic of 2020. It seems like an appropriate time to explain what medical doctors are and how they get there. A big reason that this is a good time for this is because a certain but significant segment of the American people don’t seem to know. It does seem strange that we have such a core of people but we do.

Medical doctors are also referred to as physicians. They diagnose and treat Human ailments. They must all go through a rigorous period of about 20 years of training and education where they also must perform at the highest levels of their generation and regularly pass very stringent tests. They are required along the way to not only learn but master very complex concepts of chemistry, biology, physics and math and then sit for and pass a deeply rigorous State medical examination to be licensed to practice medicine. The field of medicine places its practitioners in the unique position of all professions of having to deal, in real time, with life and death. In short, in this profession there is no room for educated guesswork or time to do extra research or politicalization of disease. Decisions have to be made in real time and they have to be right. Doctors don’t have the luxury of being able to “fake” their way through something or tell a patient something that isn’t even true for example. There’s no changing stories day by day as that will be fatal for the patient every time.

A virus is an extremely basic and ancient form of life which marks the actual demarcation of where life begins and inanimate substances end. A virus is essentially a chemical chain of basic nucleic acid or RNA. By all accounts, RNA is the chemical where life began as it is the simplest unit we’re aware of that can replicate itself. The Human concept of a mass of chemicals having “life” then is represented, in one sense, by those chemicals being able to insure their own survival by procreating themselves. Living organisms can do this, as well as other things to some extent such as move on their own, breathe, react/sense and metabolize/ produce energy. A chain link fence cannot do any of this and so it is not considered alive under any definition.

One of the largest economic concerns for Corporate America is Employee Health Management. It is true that America is seeing a lot of streamlining secondary to advancements in technology but the fact remains that Human labor is still gigantic and probably isn't going away soon. We see that jobs are lost to some extent in the tech sector but it is also clear that Amazon, Walmart and UPS, for obvious examples, require enormous numbers of Human capital.

Personal injury lawsuits range in size. But big or small the recovery is valuable to the injured party. A new and ingenious measure being used by the insurance defense complex is to avoid the costs of litigation or the risk of loss in the courts while essentially winning every case. Apparently, some of the more gung ho members of the complex have been staying up past their eight o’clock bedtimes devising a new plan. This is about as non-corporate as they can get.

All States and the Federal Courts require that a medical expert prepare a report for anyone wishing to file a medical malpractice suit. The idea is to prevent frivolous suits against the medical profession where the complexity of the case is going to require an expert witness sooner or later. The medical expert must be a licensed physician and have expertise in the field in question. The law requires the expert to review the medical records that exist as well as the facts of the case with the attorney and/or client.

Coffee is beverage which constantly gets in the news. There always seems to be a discussion about the health benefits or disease risks related to coffee. Also discussed are the financial benefits versus the risks of spending amounts of money on designer coffee beverages. There is no doubt that it does appear that those in favor of purchasing coffee are winning out over those not in favor. One simply has to look at the number of cafes that are constantly opening. There is no doubt that steamed vegetable franchises don't seem to be anywhere on the market so it does appear the public seems to like coffee more. Does anybody really know the truth about the health effects of coffee?

I promised in a previously published article where I was attacking dentists fordoing unnecessary oral exams and x-rays that I would next go after physiciansfor some similar transgressions. There are a few places where similar practicesare employed by some in the medical profession where diagnostic tests areordered that aren't needed medically but which provide cash flow to thedoctor/hospital anyhow.

I am having a hard time understanding why people are vaping more these days and smoking less. There are a lot of news reports about people vaping and the dangers associated therewith. The fact is that if the switch was made to eliminate danger than it should be realized that nothing good to that end has happened. The truth is that both activities are dangerous to your health.

I would be remiss if after doing a series on Bio-Pharma (medical drugs and devices) if I didn’t write a short article on deception in this sector. Deception in the drug sector is arguably much more serious than everyday deception because it not only effects the public’s financial status it also effects its health.

(Sixth in a Series of Pharmacy Articles)

One of the stock market sectors that still provides a small investor the chance to hit it big with a well timed, strategic investment is the BioPharma sector much of which is occupied by stock equities. Another advantage of investing in this sector is the fact that it is often a pure play independent of politics or trade wars. The fact is the development of a good medical product to treat disease will always be necessary, will always be desired by the market and public and will always therefore have the capacity to make money. But it is also true, as I have written in numerous previous articles, that it is also perfectly possible to lose money in the stock market. This is a fact that will always be true and it is not the purpose of this article to comment much more on that. The fact will always be that one must know the details of the company being invested in from a business and legal standpoint but one must also know, in the case of BioPharma, what a drug is, what it’s supposed to do, how it does what it does and whether doctors will use it and why or why not. What good is a drug if for some reason doctors are not comfortable with it or don’t use because of price problems or side effects and so on?

(Fifth in a Series of Pharmacy Articles)

We have discussed the great risk and cost involved in creating and bringing new drugs to market. In this article I discuss some inefficiencies in the retail drug process which further pushes up the price of drugs on the poor, sick consumer. In essence, we’re talking about Pharmacy Benefit Managers, Insurance Carriers and the Federal Government.

(Fourth in a Series of Pharmacy Articles)

Companies that manufacture drugs come in all sizes. An investor in the Bio-Pharma stock world needs to know what these sizes are and what they mean. In general, as in all segments of the market there are very large companies, very small companies and all sizes in between. There are advantages and disadvantages in investing in different size companies in the Bio-Pharma market place.

(Third in the Series of Pharmacy Articles)

Antibiotic medications are well known by most people as they are very common. The name literally means against-life as these drugs kill bacteria that cause Human infection. Antibiotics have been around since the 1930's when they were first discovered. Over the years the bacteria in many cases have become resistant to some antibiotics. This is a very dangerous situation which will leave the medical profession with no other effective method to fight infection. In essence we’ll be going back to the pre-1930 days when Humanity would have to stay in bed and hope that its own systems could fight and kill the infection. The fact is that very large numbers of people will either die or be very significantly damaged if they survive.

(Second in a Series of Pharmacy Articles)

In this paper I will give a very brief explanation how the process functions that must be gone through for a new drug to be approved for market use on patients. The process of starting a company and researching ways to treat disease is very specialized, long and complex. A pharmaceutical company must hire very highly trained scientists in chemistry and medicine to do research in developing a new drug. All kinds of detailed tests must be carried out and passed in every single phase of a multi-phase process. This type of research and testing takes years and is very expensive. The fact is that after all of this, to be more spelled out below, many new drugs fail to effectively enough do what they’re supposed to do or have an otherwise overly dangerous profile for Human consumption.

There is a difference between a doctor committing medical malpractice, or being medically negligent, and being a criminal. But that doesn’t mean that a doctor cannot commit a crime in the act of caring for patients. In essence, if a doctor acts negligently in the practice of medicine he has committed a civil wrong like any other civil wrong such as hitting someone with his car by accident. In medicine, as in anywhere else, a civil wrong means that one person harmed another by accident which means there never was any evil intent or plan to cause harm. This is the vast majority of acts where a doctor is sued for medical malpractice. Medical malpractice or medical negligence is an accident that occurs to the patient which occurs in the course of a doctor treating Human disease. An example of this class of charge is where a doctor gives the wrong dose of a medication or fails to timely diagnose a condition of ill being or does a surgery wrong.

There have formed alliances between community hospitals and some of the nation’s biggest and most respected institutions lately. For prospective patients, it can be hard to assess what these relationships actually mean and whether they matter according to a Kaiser Group Article. A Washington-based patient safety organization that grades hospitals based on data involving medical errors (malpractice) and best practices, cautions that affiliation with a famous name is not a guarantee of quality. Brand names don’t always signify the highest quality of care.

Many States have made medical marijuana (cannabis) legal in one form or another and for one purpose or another. Some have allowed it to be relatively unrestricted in a medical sense or “recreational” and others such as our home State of Illinois have tightly restricted it use and growth for expressly listed medical conditions of ill being. The Federal Government still considers it to be an illegal controlled substance.

Scientists have linked lower quality sleep to higher levels of a sticky plaque in the brain that researchers believe could cause Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers behind the study published in the journal Science Translational Medicine investigated whether the amount of deep sleep a person enjoys each night correlates with the levels of tau protein in their brain. Although the cause of Alzheimer’s disease is unknown, researchers believe the build-up of amyloid beta proteins, followed by tau protein, in the brain could cause the erosion of cognitive abilities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded 10 outbreaks of gastrointestinal illness on cruise ships in 2018 according to an AMA release..

Most outbreaks of gastrointestinal illness on cruise ships are caused by norovirus, a common "stomach bug" that is widespread across America in the winter. The CDC estimates there are 19 to 21 million cases of norovirus in America each year.

It is reported at Reuters Health by Mana Mishra that Ambulance oxygen tanks are likely to carry the “superbug” MRSA, a small U.S. study suggests, pointing to the need for regular disinfection of medical equipment.

Researchers tested nine oxygen tanks carried by three ambulances based at an emergency medical services (EMS) station in Alabama. They found MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, on all nine tanks.

If anyone has been involved in litigation that person probably learned that the result of what happened in court probably had little to do with what happened out of court in the first place. Everyone who goes to court thinks that they’re right and wants to win. But, fifty percent of the parties lose! This means that fifty percent of the litigants were just flat out wrong. Further, even a percentage of the winners know that maybe they shouldn’t have won and were surprised when they did. I don’t know the percentage of this category but suffice it to say that over fifty percent of court litigants are wrong in their analysis of what will happen. This seems like a high number and I briefly discuss why it is so in medical malpractice cases and to some extent in other as well.

If you have a legal matter for which you need an attorney it is always good, but not easy, to know how to pick a good, qualified lawyer. Once you retain a lawyer that person has enormous influence over your life and case. That person is basically you going forward in the eyes of the court, jury and witnesses. You therefore have to be careful and diligent in choosing one.

An incredible number of people are injured in the United States each year. Personal Injury is that area of law which deals with such injuries. There are literally hundreds of thousands of accidents of some sort many of which end up in court but most of which don’t. Personal Injury law also involves Medical Malpractice, Nursing Home malpractice and any type of health care related professional negligence. These areas of Personal Injury however are rare compared to other forms of injury and are very unique and usually much more difficult, expensive and time consuming to prosecute even though the same general principles of proof apply.

In medical malpractice trials it is usually the case that the jury may not be told whether the doctor has medical malpractice insurance or not. It is also the case that juries are not informed of the defendant doctor’s previous findings of negligence or of settlement negotiations which may have preceded trial where the doctor’s insurance carrier may have offered substantial sums of money to settle the case and make it go away.

A CAP in a medical malpractice case is a legally set artificial ceiling on the amount of recovery (money damages) a person can receive in a lawsuit. A somewhat common number for a CAP is $250,000.00. In general, a case may be capped in total or it may be split into two parts which are economic (ED) and non-economic (NED) damage CAPS.

The general idea of a lawsuit is pretty well known by the general public. It is in our Democractic credo then where there is a wrong there is a right. The court system is designed for the purpose of establishing the rights of the parties who appear before it. Without some sort of law and order there would be fighting in the streets. A well and fairly run system of courts allows people to have faith in a system and therefore abide by it. This is true no matter what type of lawsuit is filed. For this reason, it is important for the average person to have some idea of how the system works. We’re going to restrict our discussion mostly to the part of the legal system which deals with personal injury and medical malpractice.

The process of immunizing patients with immunization shots is often times misunderstood. The idea behind an immunization or vaccination is to expose the body to a chemical compound that “looks” like an invader to the system. This is because the body’s immune system is triggered by such an exposure. The immune system is contained in the Lymph Glands, Tissue Plasma Cells, Spleen, Thymus, Bone Marrow (including WBC’s or White Blood Cells) and other systems of the body. These cells recognize and kill foreign proteins meaning that anything that is not from your body will be rejected. Many people know this about organ transplants where a new Kidney for instance may be rejected by the patient’s system. The main reason for the existence of the immune system is to protect the body from foreign attack from microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses and fungi.

A known epidemic plaguing America is the overuse of and addiction to opiate medications. Opiate drugs are technically not tranquilizors which are in fact another set of addicting drugs. Tranquilizers, somewhat like alcohol (also a drug), are designed to reduce anxiety and nervousness whereas opiates are primarily designed to reduce pain. Both classes of drugs can cross over and have a certain amount of effect on both fronts but the cross over effect for the drug is much smaller than the primary effect. That is to say, a pain drug will have some calming properties but the main effect will be always for pain. The same idea is true for the tranquilizors. However, when used together the two drugs are synergistic where one and one equals three. The combined effect of using two drugs is much more potent and dangerous than using either alone. The purpose of this article is to explain one aspect of addiction treatment which is the use of drugs.

There are doctors who give medical advice on television. You can see them on ads, news shows and you can also see them on entertainment shows especially on those shows that want to capitalize on having a medical segment that further attracts the very crowd already watching. I won’t mention the shows but they’re pretty much known. Have you ever wondered how these doctors are selected to be on these shows? Have you ever wondered if they are experienced or trained in the fields they discuss for you? Perhaps, many people haven’t wondered because they think that since the doctor is on TV the doctor must be good. Perhaps you might believe that such a doctor is above the crowd and incapable of medical malpractice? In this article, I am wondering if these doctors should be held accountable to you if they give wrong advice.

The problem with healthcare costs in the U.S. is two fold. On the one hand, once a new layer, insurance coverage, is added to the ordinary Keynesian model the system is seriously thrown off. Secondly, when the providers of the services decide what services are to be rendered the system is further distorted. This simply means that a doctor is in the unique position of telling his patient what services the patient needs. But there is also the fact that the doctor profits when he does this (up sells). In most any other supply-demand situation we do not have a parallel paradigm.

An issue that comes up not infrequently in Medical and Hospital malpractice cases is whether a medical expert can testify against a nursing expert and/or vice versa. In most jurisdictions an expert witness must be licensed in the same school of medicine as is the doctor or nurse being criticized. 

It is often tricky to determine if a person has been harmed by medical malpractice. The law requires that to prove a doctor, a nursing home or a hospital (Health Care Malpractice) committed malpractice it must be shown that the health care provider acted negligently and that this caused a harm. In the law one acts negligently when he/she doesn’t apply the skill and care ordinarily applied by reasonably prudent practitioners in the same or similar circumstances. This is called a breach of the applicable standard of care.

Methods to preserve rights when things go wrong at trial

A mistrial in medical malpractice litigation can be declared in various situations. A mistrial of course is different than a new trial but the two often go hand in hand. Since this article is not meant to be a legal review suffice it to say that a mistrial is declared at the discretion of the trial court where something prejudicial is done before the jury by one side or even both sides. This can be a violation of an Order in Limine (a pre-trial order prohibitng certain comments before the jury) or it can be as a result of such plain error/conduct by an attorney or litigant that there results an effect on the jury likely to sway its opinion not on the merits but on prejudice or passion.

In the Law there term burden of proof refers to the standard which must be met to prevail in the case. The Law has different burdens for different types of cases. For example, the burden of proof (“BOP”) for a civil case is that it must be proven that one party’s position is more likely true than not or more probably true than not true. In a case where a person’s professional license is being attacked by the Government then the burden is higher, or more difficult to attain, in that the proof of the Government must be by evidence which is clear and convincing. The next higher burden is in a criminal case where a person’s freedom is at stake and here the Government’s evidence must be beyond a reasonable doubt (N.B. not beyond a shadow of a doubt and not beyond any doubt but beyond a reasonable doubt. To instruct a jury as to either of the others is absolute reversible error). Finally, the highest burden that exists is where one party asks for the case to be decided by summary judgment without a trial on the merits and this burden requires that the evidence, taken in a light most favorable for the non-moving party, is so persuasive that when the totality of the evidence is looked at that no contrary finding could stand and that no reasonable person could conclude otherwise.  

There are literally billions of dollars of medical claims litigated in the United Staes every year. In general, personal injury claims are comprised of three most frequent types, which are from most to least common; motor vehicle accidents (MVA's), slip and fall accidents and dog bites. Far, far less frequent we have medical malpractice as well as hospital and nursing home malpractice. We do hear a lot about medical and healthcare malpractice as a form of personal injury but these types of claims and lawsuits are so infrequent in comparison to the top three that they're essentially inconsequential.

An incredible number of people are injured in the United States each year. Personal Injury is that area of law which deals with such injuries. There are literally hundreds of thousands of accidents of some sort many of which end up in court but most of which don’t. Personal Injury law also involves Medical Malpractice, Nursing Home malpractice and any type of health care related professional negligence. These areas of Personal Injury however are rare compared to other forms of injury and are very unique and usually much more difficult, expensive and time consuming to prosecute even though the same general principles of proof apply.

Most of the injuries that occur to people as a result of some sort of vehicular crash are musculo-skeletal in nature. Such injuries involve the bone and joints, muscles and tendons and the nervous system. To understand a little more detail with such injuries it is helpful to know some definitions and anatomy.

Research in the field of new drug development is operating at all time highs. Hedge Funds primarily as well as more aggressive types of Investment and Capital Funds secondarily are not just holding and preserving wealth but are actively investing in the market. But also so do individual investors want to try their hand in picking the next blockbuster drug of late. Drugs are not only one of the largest segments of the market right now but they also have the advantage of literally blowing up to higher numbers in shorter periods of time than other sectors. After all, if a drug can help treat a patient it is brought to market as fast as possible and used by the medical profession. It is the practice of investment funds to get research on the drugs being tested of course. But a big field of knowledge about the drug, which could potentially make a stock purchase less risky lies in the clinical use of the drug after approval. Most firms are not getting as much information on this aspect of the drug and then end up losing sizeable chunks of invested money.

Medical malpractice refers to a broad range of legal negligence in the administration of health care. Medical malpractice, or healthcare malpractice, means that some sort of accident in the setting of healthcare delivery caused an injury. It is a form of personal injury that can result from a physician's error just as well as it can result from a nursing home error or hospital error. Any type of provider can make an error from nurses to chiropractors to podiatrists, pharmacists and dentists. The error can be of commission (the doctor does something wrong like giving the wrong drug or an error of omission such as failing to give a drug when one was needed.

Many of the brave young men and women of the United States Military have suffered greatly as a result of serving in combat zones in the defense of our Nation. The injuries suffered can sometimes be very disabling both mentally and physically and can effect the veteran's ability to work and/or live any type of a normal life.

The Federal Government (Dept. of HHS - Medicare Division) has been very aggressive of late in making claims under a little known provision in Federal Law. This Law effects anyone injured in an accident or medical malpractice anywhere in the Country whether the matter is in Federal or State Court.

When a person’s health has been impaired it doesn’t always mean that there is a case for malpractice or personal injury. Sometimes people just get hurt and it’s no ones fault.  Other times there is clearly a party that is deserving of blame - and thus owe damages. Generally it can be difficult to determine who is at fault, or even if there is a “fault.”  When we discuss personal injury or medical malpractice we are typically speaking of a person who was injured either in an accident or by care involving a health care provider, such as a hospital, doctor, physician assistant, advanced nurse practitioner, Nursing Home, or Rehabilitation Facility. Less frequently, there are also claims against Dentists, Podiatrists, Chiropractors and Veterinariums. Once a person they usually need to consult with an attorney to see if a legal case exists. This article is meant as a brief explanation and guide for the average person.  It is intended to assist in understanding the process better.

There are a lot of ways a person can suffer harm from medical malpractice. I have previously written that one good way to avoid a lot of potential medical malpractice complications is to avoid doctors and hospitals. After all, it is rather difficult to get hurt by a doctor or a hospital if you’re not there. But, I also know that a person can get hurt by over avoiding the medical establishment and not properly taking care of routine medical issues in a timely fashion. I have often said that a long sickness is a sure death. My conclusion is to utilize the medical system very prudently and check on everything.

This article discusses various types of drug reactions that can occur in a person and when a physician can be held responsible for reactions to both prescribed and over-the-counter-drugs.

It often times comes up in medical-legal forums that a person has suffered some sort of drug reaction. The nature of the reaction can be very relevant from a legal standpoint. The cause of an adverse drug reaction may be that a pharmacist mis-prescribed a drug or a doctor failed to note a drug allergy, which was listed in the medical record, and then prescribe that very drug. 

I have been helping people who have been injured by negligent health care providers, Nursing Homes and Hospitals for years. However, I have also seen many people harmed in the medical system who were injured in ways that were not professionally negligent. The fact is that mistakes are going to happen when people enter the health care arena. Many of the injuries are insignificant, or sometimes not significant enough, to warrant a lawsuit. The purpose of this article is not to discuss professional health care malpractice, but rather to discuss a few practical ways of avoiding it altogether.

Drug addiction, or substance abuse, is an extremely hot topic across the Nation. Historically, this has been targeted by law enforcement, focusing on the criminal supply and underground abuse. It was described by the phrase “War on Drugs” some 60 years ago. It, the “War”, has obviously not worked and is considered by many to be a complete failure. Drug and substance abuse is at an all time high with, what appears to be, no hope of ever being brought under control. It has been argued by some very impressive National figures and thinkers over the years that, without legalizing drugs, the so called “War” is going to end badly for the U.S. The inherent logic that keeping drugs illegal results in vast amounts of money being spent isn’t enough to convince those in power to change their minds, but one would think that the obvious and prolonged failure of the current tactics would at least be taken into consideration. This does not appear to be the case. As this is not meant to be a political paper no further thoughts will be discussed on that issue. I am resigned to the fact that we’re going to keep approaching the issue in the exact same, ineffective way for a very, very long time. Great, so be it.

Head, brain and neck injuries occur when the head suffers a direct impact or when it is accelerated, in any direction, too quickly. It is not always easy to determine if an injury has occurred. In fact, the signs and symptoms of these injuries can be very subtle and difficult to detect. It usually requires a trauma physician, or a neurologist/neurosurgeon, to make the determination and even they can miss an indicator of possible distress.