Hearing news that your health is not well can be difficult to process. While medical professionals will recommend a treatment plan, this does not always mean taking a medication, changing your diet or exercising more. In some situations, this could mean surgery or even the use of a medical device. Although it is not unheard of that patients will use medical devices to treat or reduce a health problem, these devices do not come without potential issues. In fact, they can sometimes malfunction, causing the patient to suffer serious injuries and health problems.
According to recent reports, Medicare has paid around $1.5 billion over the past decade in order to replace defective heart devices. Reports indicate that this included seven different types of devices, and these failed devices impacted thousands of elderly patients.
The Heath and Human Services Office of Inspector General states that they need to do a better job tracking these product failures as a means to protect patients from receiving a defective device and being harmed by a failed device.
The reported loss to address the seven failed device occurred from 2005 to 2014. It should also be noted that in addition to the $1.5 billion loss, the impacted patients paid roughly $140 million in out-of-pocket costs arising from the incident. Roughly 73,000 individuals were affected by these devices because of recalls, premature failures, medically necessary upgrades and infections.
If you have been harmed by a defective or failed medical device, it is vital that you understand you rights. It is possible to file a products liability suit. This action could help you recover compensation for losses arising from the incident.
Source: Fiercehealthcare.com, "Heart device failure: Medicare spent $1.5B over 10 years to replace defective implants," Fred Schulte and Christina Jewett, Oct. 3, 2017