Prostate Problems and Cancer: Unavoidable Risks and Liabilities


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Introduction

Liability for Prostate Problems

In 2019, approximately 174,650 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed, and approximately 31,620 deaths will result. The average age at the time of a prostate cancer diagnosis is about 66. It occurs primarily in older men and in African-American men. A diagnosis is rare before age 40. 

 

Even though prostate cancer is a serious disease, most men do not die from it. More than 2.9 million men in the United States who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer live with this cancer with proper treatment. It is one of the leading causes of cancer death, however, among men. 

 

Benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH) is the most common prostate problem in men older than age 50. Chronic prostatitis symptoms cause long-lasting pain and discomfort. Many men suffer from prostate problems, other than cancer, and seeking a definitive diagnosis and treatment may be difficult. 

 

Attorneys, physicians, insurers, employers, risk managers, and other potential parties to litigation need to understand the types of litigation issues that may arise in connection with injuries related to prostate cancer or other prostate problems.


The Perspectives: Improve Your Strategy

Attorneys:

What proof is needed for a malpractice claim arising from a patient’s injury related to prostate cancer or another prostate problem? And, what is a potential strategy for the attorney to employ? 

Physicians:

How can liability for medical malpractice be avoided for an injury related to a patient’s prostate? And, what is a potential strategy for the physician to employ?

Insurers:

Can a payout under a medical malpractice liability policy be avoided by proof that the health provider was not negligent or there was no coverage for the provider’s actions? And, what is a potential strategy for the insurer to employ? 

Employers:

Can an employer be subject to liability for a worker’s injury related to prostate cancer or another prostate problem? And, what is a potential strategy for the employer to use? 

Risk Managers:

Can a risk manager prevent liability or mitigate damages for an injury related to employee’s prostate cancer or other prostate problem? And, what is a potential strategy for the risk manager to use?


Practice the Technique: Checklists

Attorneys:

Check this list of facts and circumstances tending to show a provider’s malpractice liability for negligence involving prostate problems or cancer.

Physicians:

Presented is a checklist of items a physician should consider when defending against claims of malpractice or negligence involving a patient’s prostate problems or cancer.

Insurers:

The insurer should check these “red flags” and inconsistencies when investigating a claim of malpractice or negligence involving prostate problems or cancer.

Employers:

Presented is a checklist of items an employer must consider when determining if the employee's prostate problem or cancer is compensable.

Risk Managers:

Use this checklist to determine if the risk manager has identified and implemented all appropriate policies, practices, and procedures to avoid liability or mitigate damages from liability for patient prostate problems and cancer, and whether all affected parties complied with these policies, practices, and procedures. 

Expert Analysis

Can Prostate Cancer Detection Guidelines Lead to An Increase in Delayed Diagnosis?

Merel Grey Nissenberg, JD
President, National Alliance of State Prostate Cancer Coalitions; President, California Prostate Center Coalition; Patient Advocate, Early Detection Research Network of the National Cancer Institute


Litigation

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Arbitration or mediation may be required by contract or statute, may be mandated by the court or, in some circumstances, may be the appropriate method for a negotiated resolution.


Reasons To Reach Settlement

The following are reasons why the attorney, physician, insurer, employer, or risk manager would want to reach settlement, and not take the action to trial.


Reasons To Go To Trial

The following are reasons why the attorney, physician, insurer, employer, or risk manager would want to take the action to trial.


Jury Awards and Settlements

How much have juries awarded and what settlements have been reached recently in cases involving prostate problems or cancer? 



Medical Examples

Prostate Problems and Cancer

This section provides detailed medical information on the prostate, prostate problems, including prostate cancer, symptoms, the PSA test and other diagnostic testing, a differential diagnosis, treatment, and treatment side effects. Also discussed is prevention and the patient’s prognosis and ability to work. 



Law and Medicine Resources

Law and Medicine Resources

Provided is a listing of law and medical resources for further information on prostate problems and cancer.



Prostate Problems and Cancer: Unavoidable Risks and Liabilities

Table of Contents
Introduction

Expert Analysis
   Merel Grey Nissenberg, JD

The Perspectives: Improve Your Strategy
   Attorney Perspective
   Physician Perspective
   Insurer Perspective
   Employer Perspective
   Risk Manager Perspective

Practice the Technique: Checklists
   Attorney Checklist
   Physician Checklist
   Insurer Checklist
   Employer Checklist
   Risk Manager Checklist

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Reasons To Reach Settlement

Reasons To Go To Trial

Jury Awards and Settlements

Prostate Problems and Cancer

Law and Medicine Resources