Generally we don’t think about medical care in New York’s prison system. It is not a common topic that we see on news reports; and because of this, it is like prisoners are out of sight and out of mind. Despite this, prison inmates can still be victims of medical malpractice just like people in our own communities.
The story of a former Pennsylvania prison inmate exemplifies this notion. The inmate had complained about bowel problems while in custody and underwent an upper GI tract diagnostic test by an outside company. The technicians reportedly misread the diagnostic report and they failed to identify an abnormal gastric mass lesion.
This problem led to the inmate’s conditioning worsening, which then led to him needing to have blood transfusions to alleviate the problem. As such, the inmate has initiated a lawsuit against the company that performed the test, alleging that it willfully sent a technician who lacked the experience in conducting such diagnoses, and that the delayed (and ultimately incorrect) diagnosis led to the inmate’s further health problems. The inmate alleges that he suffered intense pain, emotional distress and increased risk of serious harm due to the misdiagnosis.
This means that regardless of if you are incarcerated or not, doctors and technicians must use reasonable care when diagnosing conditions. If such care is not used, and a patient is harmed, the doctor could be held liable and the patient can seek monetary compensation for their injuries.
If you have questions about your rights and options, an experienced personal injury attorney can help.