Shands hospitals in Jacksonville and Gainesville may be granted sovereign immunity protection from medical malpratice claims. Prior to the this bill, doctors working at Shands were protected while the hospitals were not in the event that hospital staff other than doctors made errors.
If the bill is signed by Governor Scott, damages will be limited to $100,000 per individual claimant and $200,000 if the claim involves wrongful death with multiple survivors. Opponents of the bill have expressed concern that hospital staff may not perform as carefully as they should if immunity is extended.
Victims of medical negligence at hospitals with sovereign immunity will have little or no recourse for covering their damages if the bill is signed. This is because medical negligence claims are extremely complex and expensive to litigate.
If a claimant must spend $50,000 on expert witnesses to bring the claim, by the time he or she has paid such expenses and lawyers, there is nothing left. As a result, there is no incentive for such victims to bring a claim. We know of no attorneys in Jacksonville who are currently willing to take cases against the doctors at Shands.
If you have questions about medical negligence claims in the the Northeast Florida area please contact our Jacksonville medical malpractice lawyers for a free in-person or over the phone consultation.