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Surgical Centers Fail to Report Fatal Errors

Healthcare is one of the most controversial and complicated issues in America, as the costs continue to reach monumental heights. In response to these mounting expenses, many freestanding ambulatory and surgery centers are an inexpensive and timely alternative for patients who are having routine surgery. With nearly 6,000 ambulatory surgery centers, or ASCs, millions of patients are willingly entrusting their lives to them.

However, the regulations surrounding ASCs are extremely lax, at the expense of patients. Hundreds of patients have died in the last several years due to a lack of training, faulty equipment, and negligent procedures. Reporting complications, transfers to emergency departments, and other serious errors are not required to be disclosed. Many doctors have ownership shares in the center they work in, causing a serious conflict of interest for voluntarily releasing this information.

One particularly shocking instance occurred when a cancer patient died after a gynecologist performed an uncertified surgery, causing her lungs to collapse. Prior to owning and working in the surgical center where this incident took place, a committee review had revoked Dr. Paul Mackoul’s hospital rights. Many people will also remember comedian Joan Rivers, whose high-profile death followed routine procedure, which was not reported to Medicare despite taking place at a New York surgical center.

As a patient who may end up at a surgery center, you may be worried about finding one you can trust. Here are a few guidelines for an extensive screening process:

  • Check The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid, which provide a list of approved centers
  • Check your surgeon’s experience, including details such as how many times they have performed this type of surgery
  • Choose a surgical center within 15 minutes of a hospital in case of emergency
  • Use the Internet to do your sleuthing and find customer reviews--people are more candid when there is anonymity
  • If you know someone who got the same surgery, inquire where they had their surgery performed and if they were happy with the results

Contact Our Top-Rated New York Personal Injury Attorneys

At Sullivan & Brill, LLP, we have cultivated a wealth of experience and successful results on behalf of our clients. If you are a victim of medical negligence or misconduct, our New York surgical error lawyers are passionate about righting this wrong and delivering the results you deserve. While we cannot erase the experience, we will do everything in our power as a legal team to ensure justice is served. Allow us to advocate on your behalf today.

To schedule an initial consultation with a member of our team, please don’t hesitate to call (646) 741-3884 today.