Archive for March, 2015

Understanding Cruise Ship Medical Malpractice

Thousands of people plan spectacular vacations aboard cruise ships each and every year. The majority are under the belief that the ship they choose will provide them with the medical care they need while at sea.

The medical personnel aboard these luxury vessels are responsible for the medical treatment of passengers and crew members and many people arrive and board ships with a false sense of security.

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A majority of passengers receive a high glossy brochure and soak up the photographs which showcase five star facilities and services, therefore it’s understandable that they think that the medical treatment they will receive on board will also be first class. Unfortunately this is not always the case and cruise ship medical malpractice claims are on the rise.

A large number of cruise ships will take you to different destinations, areas you wouldn’t ordinarily consider visiting, while this is exciting, it also means that there will not be a top quality hospital on the land. In turn, this means that the cruise ship need to provide medical assistance because you won’t be getting anything on the land while visiting.

What many people don’t realize is that more than half of passengers aged sixty five and over will seek medical treatment while on board. A larger number of them have pre-existing problems and experience complications while on board, others may slip or fall or find themselves struggling with sea sickness, gastric problems, flu and more.

It’s imperative when planning a cruise to any destination that you take special note of the medical services provided. Cruise companies will push the fact that they have a medical team, ensuring that they are appealing to older travelers and those with children. The cruise company is actually the one who is responsible for any medical actions taken while on board the ship. It is also the company that will advise the captain whether a passenger or crew member should be treated on board or if the ship should move to the nearest port to seek higher level medical care.

Most of the cruise ship medical malpractice claims are a direct result of the hospital section of the ship not being well equipped. Medical doctors and nurses are able to treat the basics, such as seasickness, cuts and bruises, but they are not equipped to handle more serious injuries such as broken bones.

The doctors on board these ships aren’t always from the United States, making it exceptionally difficult to claim directly against them. A large number of them don’t even have liability insurance, so even if you were successful they wouldn’t be able to pay the claim against them. This is why all cruise ship medical malpractice claims are issued against the company.

If you feel you have been a victim of cruise ship medical malpractice then there are a number of steps to take to ensure your claim is processed in the shortest period of time. In some cases the malpractice against you can lead to serious problems later on, including being unable to return to work until you have fully recovered.

The first step when you get home is to find an attorney that specializes in cruise ship medical malpractice. These attorneys understand what you are going through, they understand the law and can provide valuable advice to help you determine whether to go ahead with your claim or not. Bear in mind that even a winning claim takes a long time to process, some take significantly longer than others and they require paperwork, deadlines and more that your attorney will handle on your behalf, keeping you abreast of developments throughout the claims process.