Kaiser Permanente’s Most Frequent Malpractice Claims

Kaiser Permanente, California’s largest HMO, has had its share of problems over the past few years and has been fined several million dollars more than once for its claim handling practices.

To get an idea of the most frequent types of claims filed against it, we asked Jeff Milman, a member of the Advocate Law Group Network who has been practicing law for 26 years and specializes in medical negligence cases. “I see all different sorts of cases and I can’t really point you to one type. Kaiser, by virtue of the fact that it’s an HMO handling a lot of patients, seems to draw claims. Many of the claims are due to a patient’s inability to get treated.”

“It’s the old saying, ‘The squeaky wheel gets the grease’ and some patients are not as proactive as others. So, I see patients who do not receive good treatment. I see patients that don’t get the needed tests that they deserve and I see a number of misdiagnosis cases. The cases against Kaiser come in all shapes and sizes.”

Cases from the real world

As an attorney who has represented many patients against Kaiser, Milman has seen a variety of cases. We asked him to give us a few examples. “I’ve had everything from birth injury cases, where a mother will be in labor at a Kaiser facility and the facility and its staff doesn’t appreciate the gravity of the fetal monitoring strips and you have a baby that’s born with profound fetal hypoxia. They call it hypoxic ischemia and it’s basically brain damage.”

“I also have cases where there’s misdiagnosis of breast cancer. I recently did one where there was a common bile duct which had been cut during a laparoscopic colosesectomy, which is a fancy word for a laparoscopic gallbladder removal, and the physician who did that hid the true nature of this woman’s problem for four years before somebody else from Kaiser finally told her what the problems were. By that time, her labs had gone so haywire that she eventually will need a liver transplant.” Attorney Milman’s firm obtained a recovery of $1 million for the claimant in that case.

Getting the right help

If you’ve been the victim of medical negligence by Kaiser Permanente, it’s important to get the right help. Attorneys whose practices specialize not only in medical negligence, but who also know the Kaiser system inside and out are available to help. To contact an attorney, click here.

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