When Matthews & Associates signs up a client for a potential new drug or medical device case and receives the necessary paperwork to act on a client’s behalf, the law firm makes every effort to obtain that new clients’ medical and prescription drug records. But all law firms are, for practical purposes, at the mercy of hospitals, doctors and pharmacy custodians to provide the relevant records. Therefore, a law firm cannot guarantee any records it orders will arrive in a timely fashion. Consequently, anything clients can do to obtain pharmacy or medical records could only help the potential case.
Record Purging threatens Drug Cases
Drug and healthcare providers are tending to purge their records faster all the time, claiming space issues, though text takes up remarkably little computer space. Record keeping entities used to hold recortds for ten years or longer; now many purge them in as little as five years, some in as little as three years.
Records Lost to Natural Disaster
For whatever reason, it often seems record keepers only grudgingly cooperate with plaintiffs’ law firms. Foot dragging is the norm. Most records plaintiffs’ firms order take several months to arrive. In that interim, those records may have been purged, or even lost or destroyed in a natural disaster. When Hurricane Katrina blew threw New Orleans, it left more than 16 feet of water standing in some hospitals, permanently wiping out medical records for many people who had potential cases. Some potential Vioxx clients, as a result, were unable to prove that they were ever prescribed Vioxx, or that they had suffered an injury associated with the drug.
No Guarantees in This Life
There are no guarantees in this life, but one thing is clear: It is always best to obtain medical and prescription drug record evidence as soon as possible. Ideally, it is best to ask for a copy of records for each medical visit when leaving a medical facility, and to save prescription drug records as you fill prescriptions.