As a hub of military activity in the Pacific Basin, service personnel, veterans and their families look to Hawaii to provide top quality medical treatment. But sometimes trying to get medical help from a military facility leads to poor treatment and devastating injury.
From multiple locations, Tripler Army Medical Center (TAMC) serves as a teaching hospital and strives to provide health care services for about 400,000 eligible service members within its geographic reach. But along with medical care, TAMC has a disturbing track record for medical malpractice including instances of wrongful death and multiple devastating birth injuries.
Among other findings, a February 2006 review by the Honolulu Advertiser reported that over two decades, TAMC fielded about 600 claims for medical maltreatment, paying more than $14 million to settle 150 claims between 1985 and 2006.
Since then, as we discussed earlier, TAMC paid out $11 million and $16.5 million in two cases for devastating medical mistakes made by TAMC staff.
Because out of court settlement figures are oftentimes unknown, the total amount of compensation paid by taxpayers for medical error at TAMC may never be publicly known.
A group of TAMC employees filed a reported $20 million lawsuit in January 2012 against the facility alleging racial discrimination. Including doctors, nurses and a pharmacist, the suit alleges plaintiffs were called racial epithets, passed over for training and promotion, and subjected to harassment when they complained about mistreatment.
While TAMC provides quality medical service to a majority of its patients, errors made by the facility in treatment of military families — and allegedly even members of its own staff — are disturbing. Medical malpractice and racial discrimination are mistakes, not accidents. If seeking treatment at TAMC, be vigilant. And if injured at TAMC, seek quality legal counsel.
Posted in Personal Injury