Over the past few years, you may have heard growing public discussions over the real danger and long-term effects of concussions in football players and participants in other high contact sports. In 2013, Tennessee passed a law that determined how school and recreational sports programs must handle concussions.

However, this law does not govern how universities and colleges handle concussions in their sports programs. Many universities have now implemented concussion policies that guide team doctors and coaches, but there are burgeoning lawsuits against some universities over past concussions that are now causing serious mental issues for former players.

For instance, Bernard Hicks, former University of California football safety, is suing the school for the team doctor’s failure to make him aware of the serious risks of concussions when he played from 2004 to 2008. As a result, Hicks is now suffering neurological damage, with side effects including “depression, suicidal thoughts, dizziness, memory loss, and blurred and double vision.” With his personal injury attorney, Hicks is filing his case as medical malpractice.

How is Medical Malpractice Proven?

Medical malpractice typically occurs when a doctor makes a mistake or fails to do something that ultimately injures the patient. If the doctor’s action or failure to act falls below the reasonable standard of care for the patient’s age and type of illness, then the patient may be able to pursue damages through a medical malpractice case.

How Do Concussion Injuries Fall Under Medical Malpractice?

Normally we think of medical malpractice cases as surgeries gone wrong, but they can also be based on claims of medical negligence. For instance, any reasonable standard of care requires that the doctor make the patient aware of the risks associated with a procedure.

However, University of California former football player Bernard Hicks and other football players before him argue that when they played, the team doctors and coaches neglected to educate their players on the long-term neurological consequences of concussions, nor did they advise players to take proper recovery time.

Why Do I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer for a Medical Malpractice Case?

To have a successful medical malpractice case, you will need an experienced personal injury attorney who can procure medical experts to prove your side of the case. It’s important to remember that you will only have to pay the attorney fees if you win your case, and at that point you will have funds from the settlement to do so. Time is also of the essence, as Tennessee has a very short statute of limitations, and if that date passes, your claim will be forever barred. In order to meet these strict timelines, it is best to contact a personal injury attorney right away.

Contact Your Memphis Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Numerous former football players like Bernard Hicks have spoken up about the long-term brain trauma and mental illnesses they are now suffering from old concussions. Their speaking up has helped them not only gain settlements for their injuries but also influence youth sports legislation and university sports policies, as well as spread public awareness of the severity of concussions. 

Therefore, remember that in addition to covering your medical expenses, compensating for any lost salary, and paying for your pain, a medical malpractice settlement can potentially save others from suffering medical negligence with that provider.

The American Medical Association claims that the third most common cause of death in America is medical negligence, so you can be assured that Darrell Castle & Associates will take your personal injury case very seriously. Please let us know if you believe you have a medical malpractice case, and we will be glad to discuss it with you for free.

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