Follow
Share
Deb, this isn't a criticism, but rather a clarification and insight. Unless the caregiver is a proxy under a POA, including a limited one specifically to act in instituting a lawsuit, that caregiver has no authority to "hire" or retain, as the terminology is, any attorney on behalf of anyone else.

And I wouldn't permit that to happen anyway; it would cede too much control to someone who's an employee, regardless of how good a caregiver she is.


Barb's right. Medmal, products liability and PI attorneys in my experience don't require retainers, UNLESS they don't think a case exists and want to discourage someone from wasting the attorney's time on a poor and probably unprofitable case.

Or, he/she wants to get funds (especially out of pocket costs) up front in case the potential plaintiff persists, and the attorney knows that he/she is unlikely to recover costs through litigation.

A big hint is being sent - there is no good case to pursue.

On another issue, I'm glad your uncle is getting care again. According to VA newsletters I get, they've instituted more outreach programs to help injured Vets, but I don't recall all the various initiatives the VA has taken.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to GardenArtist
Report

My understanding, from reading No LO and other legal advice sites, is that most Medimal practitioners offer free consultations and take cases they think they can win on a contingency basis.

I would be very suspicious of a Medimal lawyer who wanted a hefty upfront fee. There are others on here with more experience in this area; I hope they will chime in.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to BarbBrooklyn
Report

To follow up on ? I posted 4 days ago; My Uncle, an injured Vietnam Vet was taken off his pain meds. He is back home and doing OK. His caregiver hired a Medical Malpractice attorney. Apparently attorney was Very expensive but he's back on Morphine as he has been for years, for now. That's all I know. Ty again to all the caregivers who posted comments.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Debbpressd1975
Report

I agree with Labs, with the opiod problem doctors have to look at other options. These drugs should never have been precribed for pain management. They were developed for terminal patients. I would say the seizure was from withdrawal. The doctors maybe trying to wean them off. If you r able to, speak to the family and ask if the family members are being seen by a pain management specialist. If not, maybe they should be.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to JoAnn29
Report

Pain medications are also known as opiates and quite addictive. There is an Opiod Epidemic going on with prescriptions being monitored more tightly. The addiction rates and overdoses have sharply increased over time. Seeking legal action is ridiculous. Why not look into substance abuse treatment or alternate pain management/medications. This has become a pill popping society for every conceivable ailment with results of drug addictions becoming more common with the senior citizens.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to Labs4me
Report

You just feel bad that elderly, sick people are being labelled drug addicts?

Debb, I have to say that I personally wouldn't give a monkey's if my vulnerable loved ones were labelled as drug addicts, or junkies, or dope fiends, or whatever.

I would care very much indeed if they were deprived of pain medication that was clinically appropriate; or if they were subjected to a withdrawal regime without adequate support - not to mention, whatever happened to informed consent, here? If, in short, current drug policy was being applied to them in a way that caused them to suffer.

In fact, I would do more than care. I would argue. A lot. Gather evidence of what is going on and then be your loved ones' advocate. What you're aiming for is the best care for them; and "the best" might well include reducing or stopping pain medication, but then it has to be done right, with alternative therapies and proper support to assist them.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to Countrymouse
Report

Is my mother addicted? Yes she is. Does my mother have pain? Yes she does.
Do I think my mom should keep taking vicodin? Yes I do.
The Drs. here are under a lot of pressure about pain meds and it is easy to track because everything is on computers. I think they are going to start to under-prescribe them now
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to kellse
Report

Everyone is labeled as a drug addict if they're on pain medication. You could fall out of a helicopter, have cancer, have a chronic and painful illness, have a broken leg, or be going through extensive dental surgery. If you take pain medication, you're labeled an addict.

Of course it's abused. People get addicted to it. They doctor-shop, hiding the medication from one doctor while getting it prescribed from another.

If a doctor discovers that the patient is addicted or exhibiting addictive behaviors that doctor will write one final prescription with instructions on how to taper down. If the patient doesn't follow these instructions and/or continues to play around with dosages and continues to get the medication somewhere else, the doctor has still done the ethical thing and will not write anymore prescriptions for that person. Many times, if the person is addicted they will just find another doctor but as was mentioned above, that's becoming difficult to do these days. Even people with legitimate and painful illnesses/conditions are suspect. But a decent doctor will give a person a chance to either get off the medication or get help. But usually just one chance per patient. Doctors don't want narcotic-dependent people going through withdrawal in their waiting rooms.

If someone is "cut off" from their prescription pain medication it's because the doctor is either unethical or the doctor has tried to assist the patient in tapering down but the patient has not been able to due to their dependence upon the medication.

I'm not sure an attorney can help.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to Eyerishlass
Report

Ty all for the helpful posts about the recent changes made in Doctor's prescribing narcotic pain meds. One of the patient's I mentioned was not my Mom. They both claim that the stopping of pain meds by their Doctor was abrupt. Of course I wasn't right there to see this happen. I'm most worried about the patient who was on morphine for many years. He was injured in Vietnam falling from a helicopter. He apparently was admitted to the Hospital in serious withdrawal. There are many variables to these situations as all of you stated. Maybe there was a plan to reduce meds. Or maybe directions weren't followed, etc. I just feel bad that elderly, sick people are being labeled as drug addicts. Anyway this seems to be the trend and I will sit back, think this through and calm down. Thanks again for the feedback. I shouldn't Assume anything.
Helpful Answer (2)
Reply to Debbpressd1975
Report

Yes more answers please.
Why were these people cut off from pain meds? Did someone turn the neighbor in to the police.
Were these meds legally supplied with a Drs prescription.

Seizures happen and can often be associated with a stroke or other brain malfunction.

There has been a long history of the over prescription of narcotics in this country and now Drs can face huge fines for doing it.

Unfortunately the availability of these medications to people who are in genuine pain has been severely curtailed, often to the disadvantage of the elderly whoose health needs are underserved and often not treated because they are old and have no one to advocate for them
Helpful Answer (5)
Reply to Veronica91
Report

Debb, I just did a quick bit of research and found an earlier post, in which you wrote this:

"...Mom was falling and she was randomly taking pills and getting narcotics from a neighbor ( as evidenced by her text messages)., …"

https://www.agingcare.com/questions/how-do-i-file-a-formal-complaint-against-adult-protective-in-mi-437237.htm

(Note: I found this earlier post through Debb's profile; if anyone tries to use the URL to access the post, you'll get an error message that the post has been deleted.)

Is your mother one of the people who's been cut off from paid meds? If there's a history of substance abuse, has any of her doctors recommended a treatment program?
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to GardenArtist
Report

Debb, before even considering a legal consultation, it would be helpful if you explained the situation in more detail.

Which two members were "cut off"? What meds were they taking, and for what type of pain? Was one of these relatives the one who had a stroke? If so, was this a first stroke? Is there evidence of TIAs before this stroke? What did the MRI show (I assumed the person was treated at a hospital and an MRI of the brain was done?

What would you anticipate that an attorney could do?

You are aware I assume that scripts and tolerance for long term use of pain killers is changing, and I believe (from a local newscast), that some of these changes take place in about a week.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to GardenArtist
Report

My moms doctor is slowly cutting my mother down on the vicodin, 2 a day. In 2012 she went into withdrawal ,because she was getting her pain meds from another Dr and never told her pcp she was on them. It wasnt pretty.The Dr she got them from is no longer working.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to kellse
Report

Hi debb,
How much where they prescribed per dose? How long had it been prescribed? And why was it stopped? More info would really help. Two ppl stopped receiving pain meds at the same time, something's fishy here.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to Pepsee
Report

What pain med? How long was it taken. If a narcotic doctor probably ordered a reduction in dose rather than just stopping it. If so, were those instructions followed? If they were, you may want to contact an attorney. Call several for a free half hour consultation, many attorneys offer that.
Helpful Answer (3)
Reply to gladimhere
Report