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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    11

    Default Can a Cursory Medical Exam be Medical Malpractice

    My question involves medical malpractice in the state of: California

    I'm not sure how the law looks on this one, but it is very clear this doctor did not do his job properly.

    I had applied for Medi-Cal, because i am a type 1 diabetic of over 31 years. I have not been able to afford to see a doctor over the last 5 or so years, hence my applying for the Medi-Cal, so I could get medical attention for this treatable, yet serious disease.

    The state sent me to one of their appointed doctors to be evaluated. I happily went and was looking forward to a doctor's examination, given my condition and that I had not seen a doctor in a long time.

    I was extremely disappointed. The nurse ran the typical vitals.. height, weight, blood pressure (which is high), etc. They asked me to put on the typical exam robe, which I did.

    Then the doctor comes into the room, sits at a table, asks me a couple of questions, then here was tghe actual examination...

    Get off the exam table and take a few steps (3-4), then walk back and sit on the examination table....

    Place your arms out to your side...

    Touch your nose with both hands...

    Put your arms in front of you...

    Push up and down on the doctors hands with your hands (like 2 sec each)..

    That's it! That was the entire actual exam! There was no urine test or blood test to even see if my sugar was elevated..absolutely nothing.

    I was denied Medi-Cal, so I appealed and had a hearing. The hearing judge stated on the record (he was recording the session) that I was denied the Medi-Cal specifically due to the statement from the doctor, which I was provided a copy of and do have.

    This is exactly what the doctor reported...

    "The medical evidence shows that the applicant's diabetes is under control and has not affected other vital organs. "

    Now, how is that even possible to come up with such a conlusion without running any kind of tests??? No urine, no blood..nothing. To me it is impossible even from a non medical perspective.

    I already know of complications from the doctors I have seen in the past years. Diabetic retinopathy (which I had treated alreadt once with laser years ago. Next, my kidneys are failing. Diabetic neuropathy is present and getting worse by the month. I also have high blood pressure. My hands are always swollen and I have skin ulcers as to other visible medical conditions.

    The doctor asked what I was taking for the high blood pressure, and I told him nothing, because I can't afford to seea doctor, and that is why I was there. The doctor even stated on that basis.."You are a heart attack waiting to happen."

    The entire exam took maybe up to 3 minutes, including the questions.

    Now, could anyone please tell me, is this not medical malpractice?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Default Re: Medical Malpractice

    What PREVIOUS history did you supply to Medi-Cal?

    I really don't like doing this, but I'm going to share with you a personal experience.

    My late DH was also a type 1 diabetic. He had no insurance (and hence no medical care) for years. The first time he applied for SSDI and state aid, he was denied because of 2 things - first, he had no recorded medical history of having any problems and second, the initial exam (which was very similar to yours) detected no immediate or obvious problems.

    You have no case for medical malpractice. The doctor did, and was doing, what he was being paid to do.

    You had no medical evidence to support your claim. It's tragic, it's heart-breaking - but it's not illegal and it's not malpractice. You, as the patient, had the responsibility of proving - with prior medical evidence - that you had either organ damage (and believe me I'm painfully aware of the ramifications of retinopathy and dialysis) or other complications.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Key West, FL
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    2,350

    Default Re: Medical Malpractice

    Neither life or law is necessarily fair.

    The answer is correct. This is not medical malpractice, nor could you ever find an attorney to take the case. Even if medical malpractice cases did not have seriously significant legal hurdles even to begin one, this is not worth enough money for any malpractice attorney to bother.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    11

    Default Re: Medical Malpractice

    Quote Quoting Dogmatique
    View Post
    What PREVIOUS history did you supply to Medi-Cal?

    I really don't like doing this, but I'm going to share with you a personal experience.

    My late DH was also a type 1 diabetic. He had no insurance (and hence no medical care) for years. The first time he applied for SSDI and state aid, he was denied because of 2 things - first, he had no recorded medical history of having any problems and second, the initial exam (which was very similar to yours) detected no immediate or obvious problems.

    You have no case for medical malpractice. The doctor did, and was doing, what he was being paid to do.

    You had no medical evidence to support your claim. It's tragic, it's heart-breaking - but it's not illegal and it's not malpractice. You, as the patient, had the responsibility of proving - with prior medical evidence - that you had either organ damage (and believe me I'm painfully aware of the ramifications of retinopathy and dialysis) or other complications.
    Thank you for the response.

    I did not provide actual medical records, however, I did detail, in writing and verbally, that these conditions do exist, both when I applied for Medi-Cal and to the doctor himself (again both in writing and verbally when I filled out the initial form and was talking to the doctor).

    I would have thought that in itself would at least given cause for an actual "examination", which could be easily confirmed even with a few simple tests (such as a urine test and simple A1C blood test).

    I would think that any medical doctor would at least know the generals of type 1 diabetes, since it is a common disease and it well known throughout the medical profession. Just as the huge list of complications that can come with it.

    It is medical fact and common knowledge that type 1 diabetes, no matter how well treated, will take its toll and anyone who has it will have a shorter life. That is just a fact of life I have learned to deal with.

    As I was told by my pediatrician when I was diagnosed March 29, 1979 ( I will always remember that date), he was honest with me and talked with me about it. He explained the known complications and how it could effect my life.

    I do understand of having to provide proof of any claims. That is why I was actually looking forward to having the examination, so I could find out what the current status is from an actual medical examination.

    But this was no "medical examination" for the claims I had made. And for the doctor to place in writing that "The medical evidence shows that the applicant's diabetes is under control and has not affected other vital organs." is ludacris, because it is literally impossible to make such a statement of "fact" without any actual tests being done. I consider that highly negligent.

    I guess what makes me angry is that a doctor would make such a statement, in writing, without any type of actual proof and stating that "the medical evidence shows..." when there was no examination to base such a statement on, place it as "fact", and I was denied medical care due to that.

    Thanks again for the reply.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Default Re: Medical Malpractice

    Quote Quoting SouthernCA
    View Post
    Thank you for the response.

    I did not provide actual medical records, however, I did detail, in writing and verbally, that these conditions do exist, both when I applied for Medi-Cal and to the doctor himself (again both in writing and verbally when I filled out the initial form and was talking to the doctor).

    But I could do the same thing - claim all kinds of things. Without proof though, it's a non-issue.


    I would have thought that in itself would at least given cause for an actual "examination", which could be easily confirmed even with a few simple tests (such as a urine test and simple A1C blood test).

    All that would do would be to prove that your diabetes either is or isn't well controlled. Neither would show any complicating factors.



    I would think that any medical doctor would at least know the generals of type 1 diabetes, since it is a common disease and it well known throughout the medical profession. Just as the huge list of complications that can come with it.

    It is medical fact and common knowledge that type 1 diabetes, no matter how well treated, will take its toll and anyone who has it will have a shorter life. That is just a fact of life I have learned to deal with.

    As I was told by my pediatrician when I was diagnosed March 29, 1979 ( I will always remember that date), he was honest with me and talked with me about it. He explained the known complications and how it could effect my life.

    I do understand of having to provide proof of any claims. That is why I was actually looking forward to having the examination, so I could find out what the current status is from an actual medical examination.

    I think what happened is that you misunderstood the purpose of the appointment. It wasn't to check your overall health provide you with medical evidence.

    But this was no "medical examination" for the claims I had made. And for the doctor to place in writing that "The medical evidence shows that the applicant's diabetes is under control and has not affected other vital organs." is ludacris, because it is literally impossible to make such a statement of "fact" without any actual tests being done. I consider that highly negligent.

    But it's the truth. I think you're misunderstanding how it works - again the doc wasn't there to perform organ function tests or anything else. The doc was there simply to opine whether or not there is any medical evidence supporting your claim.


    It's not negligence.



    I guess what makes me angry is that a doctor would make such a statement, in writing, without any type of actual proof and stating that "the medical evidence shows..." when there was no examination to base such a statement on, place it as "fact", and I was denied medical care due to that.

    Thanks again for the reply.


    No - you were denied medical care because you didn't have evidence of the things you claim.

    Their doctors aren't going to diagnose or treat you; their job is purely to gauge - given the evidence YOU provide - whether or not you fit certain criteria.

    They are not going to run tests; that's not their function.

    I'm sorry you're dealing with this but the cold hard reality is that you were denied based upon your lack of medical records.

    Please don't misunderstand - I am more than sympathetic, and not just because my late DH and I went through the exact same thing.

    It's a vicious cycle - you can't afford healthcare (which you need in order to obtain a record of your health problems), and you can't get State aid or disability because you don't have a record of your health problems!

    I do wish you the best.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Medical Malpractice

    Quote Quoting Dogmatique
    View Post
    But I could do the same thing - claim all kinds of things. Without proof though, it's a non-issue.





    All that would do would be to prove that your diabetes either is or isn't well controlled. Neither would show any complicating factors.





    I think what happened is that you misunderstood the purpose of the appointment. It wasn't to check your overall health provide you with medical evidence.




    But it's the truth. I think you're misunderstanding how it works - again the doc wasn't there to perform organ function tests or anything else. The doc was there simply to opine whether or not there is any medical evidence supporting your claim.


    It's not negligence.






    No - you were denied medical care because you didn't have evidence of the things you claim.

    Their doctors aren't going to diagnose or treat you; their job is purely to gauge - given the evidence YOU provide - whether or not you fit certain criteria.

    They are not going to run tests; that's not their function.

    I'm sorry you're dealing with this but the cold hard reality is that you were denied based upon your lack of medical records.

    Please don't misunderstand - I am more than sympathetic, and not just because my late DH and I went through the exact same thing.

    It's a vicious cycle - you can't afford healthcare (which you need in order to obtain a record of your health problems), and you can't get State aid or disability because you don't have a record of your health problems!

    I do wish you the best.
    Thank you again for your response and the explinations.

    I was certainly mistaken. I did think it was for an actual examination to verify my condition(s)/claim. No one told me I would need or even recommended I try to get all of my old medical records. I was under the impression that the doctor was going to actually examine me and then let the state know my status and condition.

    From that perspective, why did they even bother to send me to theur doctor in the first place? It was totally useless (except the doctor getting paid by the state) in every form.

    It is sad when we have such a system. I had worked since I was 14 and paid my taxes, a law abiding citizen .. and now, when I truly could use medical attention, I get caught up in such a system.

    Thanks again for the explination.

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