December 2, 2010 – Palo Alto, CA – A military veteran who is now legally blind because of medical negligence has been awarded a $250,000 settlement. According to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle, David E. Woodward Sr., 87, is a patient at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, a Northern California Veteran’s Administration hospital. Woodward and eight other patients at the hospital were recently informed that the vision loss from which they all suffer may have been caused by improper care. Woodward was originally diagnosed with “glaucoma suspect” that went untreated for more than four years. It is now clear that Woodward should have been diagnosed with glaucoma long ago, rather than just “suspect.” Had he been diagnosed and treated at the appropriate time, it is possible that Woodward would not now be legally blind. According to a letter from the hospital’s chief of staff addressed to Woodward, his vision loss from glaucoma “may have been preventable.” The letter goes on to say that Woodward’s treatment should have been “overseen and reviewed by an eye care specialist.” Woodward has now received a $250,000 settlement for the hospital’s negligence. Though the hospital and government refuse to admit fault in the case, Woodward’s Lawyer, Kim Staskus, pointed out that the payout speaks loud enough.
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