Albuquerque Law Blog

Typos, error-prone abbreviations can have catastrophic outcomes

Specificity and accuracy are critical components of practicing medicine. Everything from a surgical procedure to a patient prescription depends on precise measurements and instructions.

Medicine is also an incredibly complex field. And medical workers are often under incredible pressure to meet deadlines and tend to as many patients as possible. As a result, it is not uncommon for mistakes to occur when it comes to making, reading or translating medical information. These mistakes -- even a seemingly small typo -- can have a catastrophic impact on patients.

How do New Mexico hospitals rate for patient safety?

Hospital safety is a critical issue for both patients and hospitals. For patients, it impacts their well-being during (and possibly well after) hospital stays. For hospitals, it impacts their reputation, liability exposure and ability to serve their mission of helping patients. So, how hospitals in the state are doing when it comes to patient safety matters considerably.

Recently, New Mexico slipped a fair amount in the Leapfrog hospital safety ratings. In recent years, Leapfrog has released hospital safety ratings in both the spring and fall. In these ratings, hospitals throughout the U.S. are given safety grades on an A through F scale.

FMCSA reports rise in dump, ready-mix concrete truck crashes

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has some crash data out for 2016 that should be of interest to truck drivers in New Mexico. In that year, the latest for which there are statistics, the number of serious accidents among dump trucks and ready-mix concrete delivery trucks rose by 9 percent and 9.6 percent, respectively. (By a "serious" crash is meant one where the truck had to be towed away.)

In all, there were 8,206 serious dump truck crashes and 838 ready-mix concrete truck crashes. Dump truck crashes that caused injury went up 2.7 percent to a total of 5,483. This includes dump trucks used for non-construction purposes. For ready-mix concrete trucks, the rate increased 3.8 percent.

Everything you need to know about drowsy driving

Operating a motor vehicle is a big responsibility, as any type of accident can cause serious injury or even death. There are many potential causes of a motor vehicle accident, with drowsy driving at the top of the list.

On the surface, it sounds simple to avoid drowsy driving. However, the more you drive, the more you realize that this is not always the case.

How do trademarks, copyrights and patents differ?

Protecting and respecting intellectual property is important, especially in our current Internet-based environment. Understanding how different protections work can help avoid a dispute in the future.

It’s not easy to know what you need for your original work or how someone else’s property is protected, especially when there are different protections available. How do trademarks, copyrights and patents differ?

Preventing medical mistakes by scrutinizing medical records

People may not know that they can review their own medical records. However, doing so can be crucial in being an advocate for yourself and preventing treatment mistakes and medical errors. As such, patients would be wise to request and review their medical records periodically.

Unfortunately, mistakes happen when it comes to these records. And these mistakes -- no matter how small -- can affect the care and attention patients receive. 

Don't let bad judgment make business disputes worse

"It's not personal, it's business." This is a common phrase people hear or say when business owners must make difficult decisions that will likely make some people unhappy. However, when it comes to small or medium-sized businesses, it can be all but impossible to separate the personal element from the business element.

Considering how intertwined business and personal matters can be, it is important to keep potentially bad judgment in check if you run a business with a friend or relative.

What are the riskiest behaviors and days for truck accidents?

Every time we get in our cars or trucks, there is some risk of getting into an accident. However, there are certain behaviors and time periods that can increase this risk.

A recent report from Lytx reveals some of the factors that can result in a high risk of collisions involving trucks. Knowing what these are can help all drivers stay alert and make any necessary changes to their own behaviors to prevent crashes.

People in the smaller vehicles get hurt more in truck crashes

Commercial trucks are a critical part of the modern American capitalist system. They help keep costs low for goods and materials transported across the country. Unfortunately, the trade-off for the cost reduction provided by commercial trucking is often more risk on the road.

Sharing the roads with commercial trucks is downright scary. These massive vehicles have incredibly loud horns, cause massive wind shear and tend to drive very aggressively. This can create unnecessary risk on the road. Being aware of this risk is critical, especially because you are at a greater risk than anyone in a commercial truck.

Albuquerque child psychiatrist charged with death of 36 patients

The New Mexico police are investigating an Albuquerque psychiatrist in relation to drug overdose deaths of 36 patients. The 74-year-old psychiatrist was most commonly known for his work with children. However, authorities have not yet commented on whether any of the deaths involved minors.

During his career, the psychiatrist reportedly engaged in some questionable behaviors. For instance, reports say he was known for dressing up as a clown and prescribing large amounts of psychiatric medications to his minor patients. Some of his patients recall him handing months of prescriptions to them upon walking into his office. He didn’t even sit down and talk to the children about whether they even needed or wanted the medication.

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