VA Treatment Delays

A May 2014 report by the Veterans' Administration Office of Inspector General confirmed allegations that leaders of VA clinics may be sacrificing treatment for profit. According to the report, VA clinics have been improperly registering patients, putting them at risk for getting lost in the system without being seen. In fact, the report follows claims that at least 40 veterans died while waiting to be seen by physicians at a clinic in Phoenix.

If your loved one died while waiting to be seen by a VA clinic, or if you feel that you or someone you love was otherwise harmed by VA medical malpractice, you may qualify to file a lawsuit against the U.S. government. To find out if you qualify for a lawsuit, contact a medical malpractice lawyer today.

Shady Scheduling Practices at VA Clinics

The clinic in Phoenix was also found guilty of engaging in shady scheduling practices. According to the report, more than 1,700 vets were waiting for a primary care appointment, but were nowhere to be found on the electronic waiting list.

The report also showed the average wait time for an initial primary care appointment at this location was 115 days, even though the clinic told the VA the average wait time was only 24 days. Leaders of the clinic allegedly fudged the wait time so they would be considered for awards and salary increases.

When and How to Sue the VA for Malpractice

If you feel that you or a loved one has been mistreated at a VA clinic, you may be eligible to sue the U.S. government under a federal law called the Federal Torts Claims Act (FTCA). Before you can sue the government, you are required to file an administrative claim against the VA for damages. It is important to note that once you file a claim, you cannot seek additional damages. Thus, it is in your best interest to speak with an attorney who can help determine the maximum amount of damages you can seek.

Once a claim is filed, the VA has 6 months to respond. It may accept your claim and agree to pay the full amount of damages sought, it may offer you a reduced settlement amount, or it may reject your claim altogether. If you feel that you are owed more than what the VA offers, you can file a lawsuit in federal court. Under FTCA, you have 2 years to file lawsuit from the time you were allegedly injured by the VA's malpractice. Thus, you will need to act fast and start the process as soon as possible to avoid missing the timeframe.

Types of VA Medical Malpractice Claims

You may be eligible to sue the government for injury or death caused by:

  • Improper treatment delays
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Medication errors
  • Failure to detect heart attack or other emergency situations
  • Cancer misdiagnosis
  • Failure to communicate
  • Surgical errors

Get the Legal Help You Need

If you feel that you or someone you love was harmed by intentional or unintentional mistakes by a VA clinic, you can seek help from an experienced medical malpractice lawyer. A qualified attorney can help you navigate the confusing legal process and can help you recover the maximum amount of compensation owed to you by law. To learn more, contact an experienced medical malpractice lawyer today.

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