For military veterans in Illinois and across the country, treatment for illnesses, injuries and conditions that came about due to being in the armed forces have become a frequent topic of discussion. Sadly, there is not enough attention paid to those who placed their lives on the line to defend their country. Also, the VA is often cited for making various mistakes in diagnosing and treating patients. Those who believe that they have been subjected to medical malpractice at the hands of a negligent VA doctor need to know their rights, as can be seen by one recently released report.
An investigation examined how tens of thousands of veterans received testing to determine if they had traumatic brain injury. Unfortunately, these tests were conducted by staff members who were not qualified to make these assessments. The investigation took place in Wisconsin, where more than 300 former military members were informed that they could receive a retest if they chose to do so. One man had a broken nose and whiplash when an explosive device injured him. Diagnosed with TBI, he suffers from headaches and seizures.
For those who are returning from active duty in combat zones with brain injuries, there are tests that the VA will give to see if TBI exists. The tests in these instances, however, were found not to follow requisite guidelines that were put in place in 2007. It was recently revealed that unqualified staff conducted those tests from 2007 to 2015. Since TBI can be better treated the earlier it is diagnosed, this delay can negatively influence veterans’ very livelihood. As a result, more than 25,000 veterans are eligible to be retested.
When an unqualified medical professional or a negligent doctor does not follow required procedures, it can turn a patient into a victim. Since TBI and other forms of brain injury can lead to so many different issues for a person who is suffering from it, having a correct diagnosis is a key. Those who have been subjected to this type of egregious medical malpractice should speak to a qualified attorney to determine if there is a basis to file a lawsuit.
Source: WTMJ-TV, “VA admits possible misdiagnosis on veterans’ brain injury exams,” Courtny Gerrish, June 30, 2016