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Patients Infected by Hepatitis C Recover $34 Million

April 25, 2013

Bringing Legal claims for injuries and adverse medical conditions suffered because of substandard medical care can be complicated, because such claims require specialized knowledge of medicine in terms of the appropriate standard of care and deviations from acceptable medical standards.

These cases also require expert testimony be communicated to a judge or jury in an understandable way.  In addition to these challenges, causation may be a serious issue of contention in many medical malpractice cases, especially where a significant period of time passes between the medical error and the onset of symptoms related to the medical error or omission.

Fortunately, these difficulties can sometimes be offset to some degree by the availability of multiple parties who may be legally responsible for injuries suffered in a medical malpractice lawsuit in Georgia. A recent case from another state in which two patients recovered $24 million in damages after being infected by hepatitis C provides a helpful illustration.

The two patients went in to see the physician for a colonoscopy but were infected with the hepatitis C virus when the doctor used vials of anesthesia on multiple patients and failed to properly sterilize his medical instruments, according to the Bloomberg report. The doctor had engaged in this unsafe practice so regularly that the health department in the state where the lawsuit was filed was forced to notify almost 50,000 past patients of the potential risk of exposure.

While the doctor was liable for the failure to take appropriate measures to prevent infecting his patients, the patients' health insurance company was also found liable for the harm caused to the patients. The jury found that the health insurance company that included the doctor as a provider did not take any steps to evaluate the quality of care provided by the physician despite prior complaints.

The manufacturer of the anesthesia also was the subject of a separate lawsuit. The manufacturer of the anesthesia was found liable because it provided the drug in vials big enough to support use with multiple patients despite the fact it was only intended for single use. Medical facilities like surgical centers can also be liable for these types of injuries when physicians fail to comply with appropriate protocols when performing medical procedures at the facility.

Despite the challenges involved in pursuing a medical malpractice legal claim, when the required legal elements can be established, injury victims and their families can recover the financial compensation they need to cover medical costs and lost income while preserving a high quality of life following an injury from substandard medical care.

Why Montlick & Associates?

If you have received substandard medical care that caused serious injury or the death of a loved one, you may have a viable liability claim against the doctor, hospital and/or your health insurance company. Choosing an experienced law firm can make all the difference in getting you the best possible outcome for your case.  For over 38 years, the  Georgia Personal Injury Attorneys at Montlick & Associates have been providing effective legal representation to famlies throughought Georgia.  Contact Montlick & Associates today for a free consultation with one of their Georgia medical malpractice attorneys.

No matter where you are located, the attorneys at Montlick & Associates are just a phone call away, and will even come to you. Call 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit online at and use the firm’s Free 24-hour Live Online Chat or Free Case Evaluation Form.

Please Note:
Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.