Gould Cooksey Fennell

Medical Malpractice

Vero Beach Medical Malpractice Lawyers

If you’ve been injured as a result of a doctor’s negligence, it’s important to have a passionate, experienced attorney on your side who is focused on educating you about your options and rights as a patient. Nobody expects to be injured when they see their doctor, but it can happen, and when it does, you might be eligible to receive compensation for the problems that were caused.

Gould Cooksey Fennell is the best law firm for doctor malpractice because we’re a well-established law firm with a lot of experience in this field. We offer passionate representation and will work tirelessly for you, giving you the personal attention you deserve. Our attorneys are zealous about getting justice for everyone, and we care about the community. The residents of Indian River County have trusted us for years, and we’re proud of the track record we’ve delivered to our clients.

Types of Negligence & Malpractice Cases We Handle

At Gould Cooksey Fennell, we handle an array of general medical malpractice claims. Medical malpractice occurs when a doctor delivers care that is substandard and harms his or her patient. Unfortunately, this type of injury is not uncommon, which means it’s important for you to keep a record of your symptoms and treatments in order to safeguard yourself from potential negligence. Medical malpractice can take many forms, including (but not limited to):

  • Misdiagnosis: Misdiagnoses can result in serious injuries. This can happen if a provider fails to thoroughly review your medical history, pursues improper testing, or misreads test results.
  • Prescription errors: Receiving the wrong drug or the incorrect dosage can cause significant harm to your body and should be treated as medical malpractice.
  • Anesthesia mistakes: If a provider fails to properly monitor a patient while he or she is under anesthesia, the patient might not wake up.
  • Information failure: HIPAA laws exist to protect patients. If medical information is provided to someone who’s not the patient without that patient’s consent, the provider is medically negligent.

At our Vero Beach law firm, we tackle any case whereby medical errors or any act that caused the patient to be sicker or further injured than they were when they came into the health care facility. Additionally, we also handle personal injury cases related to problems that occur during doctors’ visits, including:

  • Nursing home negligence
  • Medical device liability
  • Surgery malpractice

What is Medical Malpractice?

The medical industry is held to a high standard of care. If the standard is not met according to Florida statute, it can be considered negligence. Doctors must abide by a rule of “acceptable practice”—that is, the standard of care that can be found in the medical literature; a breach of that standard testified by a medical expert can help prove negligence.

Medical negligence can be perpetrated by a number of healthcare professionals, including:

  • Doctors
  • Surgeons
  • Specialists
  • Nurses
  • Nurse practitioners
  • Pharmacists
  • Other health care providers

The commonality of medical malpractice is astounding. From 2015 to 2020, there were 60,171 medical malpractice claims filed in the United States, according to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB). Florida represented 5,979 of those cases, representing an average payout of $218,316.Johns Hopkins Medicine reports that 10 percent of U.S. deaths are now caused by medical malpractice, making it the third-highest cause of death in the country.

Is There a Time Limitation for Medical Malpractice Cases?

Medical malpractice cases can take years, so it’s important to consult an attorney as soon as you suspect there’s been negligence. Florida has a four-year statute of limitations. However, the tat is looking to move to a two-year statute of limitations with a four-year statute of repose a seven-year maximum cap for cases that are grossly negligent, such as fraud, concealment, or “intentional false representation by a protective health care provider.” Unlike other personal injury cases, medical negligence is on a tighter timeframe.

Damages for Medical Negligence Cases

A person who has been harmed through the negligence of a medical provider may be able to recover damages. Our Vero Beach law firm has successfully worked with clients to recover the following types of damages:

  • Compounding medical bills: If you’ve been hurt, you may not be able to work, which makes it only that much more difficult to pay the medical bills that keep piling up.
  • Losing employment: Severe medical malpractice can leave you out of the job if your body is injured in a way that disallows you to function as you need to perform your duties.
  • Pain and suffering: This can mean both physical and emotional trauma suffered from medical negligence.
  • Mental anguish: Many of the aforementioned items, such as compounding medical bills, can lead to anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues.
  • Emotional distress: You could be a victim of PTSD or other emotional traumas if your medical malpractice harmed you in a way that makes it difficult to continue life as you once knew it.
  • Medical device purchases: Medical devices are expensive, and you shouldn’t have to pay the cost if you need one as a result of a physician’s malpractice.
  • Physical therapy: People who have been injured in medical malpractice situations often require physical therapy to get their bodies working the way they’re supposed to.
  • Hiring help around the house: You might find that you’re unable to lift things, bend over, or stand for extended periods of time. This can make cleaning, cooking, and everyday household tasks hard or impossible.
  • Potential future medical procedures: It’s possible you might need to have future procedures to fix ailments that occurred as a result of the medical malpractice you’ve experienced.

What is the Non-Economic Damages Cap in Florida?

There are different caps for “medical practitioners” (cases in which doctors or other healthcare providers caused the errors) versus “non-practitioner” defendants. In Florida, there is a $500,000 cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice lawsuits against practitioners. However, that cap jumps to $1 million if the malpractice caused death or a vegetative state. The cap for non-economic damages is $750,000 in lawsuits against defendants who are “non-practitioners”. There are, though, exceptions, as noted in the statute Fla. Stat. Ann. § 766.118.

Why Hiring an Experienced Medical Negligence Attorney is Crucial

If any of this information is new to you, you need us on your side. Our Florida medical malpractice attorneys specialize in medical malpractice, surgical malpractice, and health care negligence. Our job, as an experienced team of lawyers, is to help investigate the terrible situation you’ve endured on your behalf and determine the causes that lead to the medical error.

Let Our Experienced Team Fight for You — Schedule a Free Consultation Today

If you’ve been harmed by a health care worker, you deserve amends and compensation. Allow our team at Gould Cooksey Fennell to get you the justice you have a right to. We proudly represent clients in Indian River County, Treasure Coast, Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, and Stuart, FL. We look forward to hearing from you.

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Notable Verdicts & Settlements

Medical Negligence claim arising out of a breach in the standard of care by failing to follow physician’s orders and hospital policies with regard to timely assessments of the Plaintiff and her vital signs; failing to recognize signs of respiratory distress; and failing to follow hospital policies regarding recording and disposal of PCA morphine.

Trial arising from failure to diagnosis colon perforation after a laparoscopic hysterectomy surgery causing permanent injury to the Plaintiff. After a three week trial a Martin County jury rejected the Defendants’ position finding the hospital 70% responsible for Mrs. Moore’s damages and the physician 30% responsible. The award included just over $600,000 for past medical expenses, $370,000 in future medical care, and non-economic damages of almost $2 million.

Injury resulting from a freezer door falling on Plaintiff while shopping at a retail store.

Gould Cooksey Fennell served as Co-Counsel in a Georgia case involving alleged misdiagnosis/mistreatment of preeclampsia resulting in the death of a 39 year old mother.

Plaintiff was knocked over by unleashed dogs, resulting in a fall and ultimate brain injury.

Settlement arising from motor vehicle crash that killed a husband and wife in Indian River County.

A Brevard County Jury awarded Plaintiff $6.4M against Defendant State Farm, following an accident that resulted in numerous catastrophic orthopedic injuries, including a below knee amputation of the Plaintiff’s left leg.

Plaintiff sustained numerous orthopedic injuries as a result of the negligence of a driver working for the State of Florida Department of Agriculture. At trial, the case resulted in a verdict of $5,582,776.82. Because the government’s damages are statutorily limited to $100,000 under Sovereign Immunity laws, Gould Cooksey Fennell’s Personal Injury Group was forced to fight in the Legislature for several years to pursue the passage of a Claims Bill. Ultimately a Bill was passed for 40 times the statutory limitations.

Indian River County crash resulting in significant injuries to a husband and wife. This matter was resolved prior to filing a lawsuit.

Obtained a Trial Verdict of $1.64 million dollars for injuries sustained by an 86 year old woman in a rollover auto accident on SR 60 in Vero Beach, Florida. After prolonged hospitalization, Mrs. Koebele never fully recovered and an Indian River County Jury awarded $1,170,130 for her injuries and $475,000 for her husband’s consortium claim.

Indian River County jury awarded verdict against Defendant State Farm following an automobile accident where the defendant Driver was underinsured.