Surgeon Involved in $30 Million Medical Malpractice Settlement

A malpractice suit in Chicago has led to a $30 million settlement. much to one family’s relief. According to the Chicago Tribune, a Chicago family was awarded $30 million after a surgeon allegedly performed experimental surgeries on an infant patient.

In 2011, Dr. Mark Holterman performed 25 total surgeries on a child, which resulted in cerebral palsy and irreversible brain injury. The child was born in 2009 with non-life-threatening conditions, one being a leak in his esophagus, and over the course of 17 months, Holterman operated on the child 25 times. The attorney for the family, Stephan Blandin, stated that Holterman’s operations were “not only medically careless and personally irresponsible, but also demonstrated a dramatic lack of oversight from the hospital.”

The $30 million settlement is the fourth largest medical malpractice payment in Illinois that involved a child.

Negligence, along with poor medical treatments, are resulting in a lot of malpractice cases, and in many cases, even worse.

A recent survey by the National Patient Safety Foundation shows that one of the leading causes of death in the entire U.S. is from medical errors. As reported by the Personal Injury Bureau, resulting in approximately 400,000 deaths in 2014, the NPSF found that surgical errors and other medical mistakes causes the third amount of all deaths in the United States.

Occurring in roughly one in every 10,000 operations, serious surgical errors are far too common in the medical field. Including burns from surgical fires, operating on the wrong area, and retained surgical items, these surgical errors can be lethal and cause many problems for everyone involved.

Along with the potential damage done to the patient, the surgeons and hospitals involved have negative repercussions after a mistake in surgery. Coming in at 34%, surgery errors account for the most medical malpractice claims in the United States.

By law, surgeons are held to the same standard as every other medical professional. Surgeons who deviate from the standard of medical care are susceptible to not only medical malpractice claims, but the damage or loss of life of a patient.

With surgical errors coming in at the top, National Law Review reported that from 2007 to 2014, 78% of all medical malpractice claims were from incorrect treatment management, medical errors, and incorrect diagnosis.

A universal protocol has been implemented to attempt to lower the amount of medical and surgical errors. Better training and communication are necessary for improving the healthcare system, and to lower the surgical errors resulting in medical malpractice cases, damage to the patient, or death.