On October 13, 2014, two medical malpractice lawsuits were filed in federal court in Oregon on behalf of one inmate who died the day before he was to be released, allegedly due to medical malpractice that occurred in the jail, and the other filed on behalf of an inmate who lost a testicle that had swollen to the size of a baseball, allegedly due to medical malpractice.
The $5 million prisoner medical malpractice lawsuit filed on behalf of the 43-year-old inmate who died the day before his scheduled release from jail alleges that he was incarcerated for fourth-degree assault and possession of a controlled substance beginning on October 28, 2013, at which time he did not have any physical complaints. However, beginning on November 9, 2013, he began experiencing stomach pain. The prisoner was seen by the nurses at the jail on November 14, 2013, by which time he had vomited four times and had five episodes of diarrhea. Despite his symptoms and condition, he was returned back to his jail cell, with a prescription for Immodium, which was never filled.
On November 18, 2013, a deputy heard the man moaning and gave him Milk of Magnesia. He told an EMT at the jail that he thought that he had blood in his urine. The inmate was unable to get out of bed and was unable to eat. Despite his symptoms and condition, he was not sent to the local hospital until November 21, 2013. Less than six hours after he arrived at the hospital, he was dead from bleeding ulcers.
The $1.05 million inmate medical malpractice lawsuit filed on behalf of the prisoner who had a prior history of testicular swelling alleges that the man was serving a 40-day sentence for second-degree criminal mischief during November 2013, when his testicle became swollen, resulting in much pain and causing him to walk with a limp. He was not allowed to have surgery to address his condition until eight days later, after which he was immediately returned to jail. He spent the next five days in a great deal of pain during which he claims he was denied pain medication and his testicle was infected. He was returned to the hospital where surgery was performed to remove his testicle that allegedly had swollen to the size of a baseball.
While inmates and prisoners may not expect to receive medical care within the same timeframe as noncustodial individuals may expect under nonemergency circumstances, they are still entitled to proper medical care while in custody. The failure to provide timely and appropriate medical care to prisoners may result in claims of medical negligence and cruel and unusual punishment. Except in the most egregious cases, it may be difficult for an inmate or former prisoner to find an attorney to assist him in filing a claim for injuries suffered as a result of medical negligence while incarcerated.
Nonetheless, if you or a loved one suffered serious injuries (or worse) while incarcerated in the United States, you should promptly seek the legal advice of a local medical malpractice attorney in your state who may be willing to investigate your prison medical negligence claim for you and represent you in a inmate medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
Click here to visit our website or telephone us toll-free in the United States at 800-295-3959 to be connected with medical malpractice lawyers in your state who may handle prison medical malpractice claims.
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