Catastrophic injuries are usually very obvious to identify and include brain injuries, paralysis, loss of a limb, blindness, or loss of an important bodily function.
Despite the obviousness of their appearance, what is not so obvious are the long term needs that a person with a catastrophic injury will have. Catastrophic injuries generally result in monumental expenses.
A child who is deprived of oxygen at birth that causes severe brain damage may require 24 hour nursing care and expensive medical assistance to provide the highest quality of care possible.
The costs for such care over the life of the child can reach 15 to 25 million dollars.
Or the loss of a limb may require extensive physical and vocational rehabilitation and training to help bring the victim back to the highest level of quality of life.
Also, they may need prosthetic appliances, wheel chairs, or numerous other items that are extremely expensive, wear out, and needs replacing and maintenance on a continuing basis.
In a trial, when we ask the jury to award these past and future medical expenses, we use the assistance of experts who meet with each of the treating doctors to determine what needs and assistance the victim should have for their future care.
These experts quantify the cost of each piece of equipment, tell us how long the equipment will last, and they tell us how many times the particular piece of equipment will need to be replaced during our client’s expected life.
Using inflation rates for medical services and appliances, the experts can accurately predict the costs of the services and equipment needed to help the victim maintain the highest quality of life.
It is quite clear that an injured victim’s quality of life is greatly improved when the best healthcare services are provided to keep the victim living at their highest and fullest capacity.