Florida High School Student Struck by Motorist

A high school student from South Fort Myers just sixteen years of age was reportedly hit by a woman driving a Toyota Tacoma in the predawn hours Thursday. It is not clear exactly what caused the accident. The driver admitted to being aware of having hit something, but claimed to be unaware that it was a person.

A man on his way to work came upon the injured girl and noticed she was in trouble, and barely able to breathe. He called 911 and stayed with her, noting she was very badly hurt. He said he thought she might have died on the spot.

The man who called 911 said the driver was no longer in sight, but pieces of the vehicle were scattered about the scene. Other teens were also nearby, screaming for help.

Authorities said the driver’s failure to remain at the scene of the car accident could result in two felony charges against her.

Florida Highway patrol said they do not believe either cell phone use or alcohol contributed to the accident. The truck was reportedly traveling under the speed limit. Even absent those factors, however, the smallest distraction may be enough to cause an accident. This is especially true at night and during twilight hours. Insufficient street lighting can also play a role. The 911 caller commented to reporters that he wished the area where the accident occurred had better lighting.

Call a Tampa auto accident lawyer with Joyce & Reyes at 1.888.771.1529 or visit http://www.joyceandreyespa.com/

Doctors, Patients Raise Concerns about Pill Mill Legislation

Florida has been the number-one state in the nation for years when it comes to sales of painkillers. Of all the Oxycodone sold nationwide in 2010, 89 percent was sold here. Much of that went to addicts and drug dealers both within the state and far beyond.

In 2010, Florida lawmakers passed tough restrictions on the sale of Oxycodone and other Schedule II and Schedule III drugs. The law tightens the rules on prescribing painkillers and penalizes doctors who prescribe too many of them with six-month suspensions and minimum fines of $10,000. It also bars doctors, with a few exceptions, from dispensing the drugs from their offices.

Ft. Pierce general practitioner Dr. Dwight Dawkins is among those saying the law makes legitimate prescriptions too difficult. He recently had to order a urine test to prove an 80-year-old patient was not a drug addict. He says that some patients with chronic pain are required to visit their doctors every month, when he otherwise might ask to see them only once every three months. Dawkins says that he is committed to getting his patients the medicine they need, but does not plan on taking on new patients who will require pain medication.

About a dozen people recently rallied outside the state capitol in Tallahassee in protest of the painkiller crackdown, which they see as preventing legitimate pain patients from getting needed medicine and causing needless suffering. Protester Robin Haas has undergone 16 surgeries as the result of two car accidents. She has prescriptions for morphine and Oxycodone, but says it can take weeks to find a pharmacy willing to fill them. She also says the law has prejudiced pharmacy personnel against people with painkiller prescriptions and that she is treated like a criminal.

Another provision of the law has many worried about privacy and doctor-patient confidentiality. Every time a prescription for these controlled substances is filled, the name of the doctor prescribing the drug and the patient receiving it are entered into a statewide database known as E-FORCSE. Advocates of the program say it will serve to deter and track doctors and patients who would abuse these prescriptions. But defense attorneys say it gives law enforcement easy access to confidential medical data.

Law enforcement officers who wish to access medical records as part of a criminal investigation have to show probable cause and persuade a judge to sign off on a warrant. But protections of data in the prescription drug monitoring database are more lax. Investigators wishing to access the database must demonstrate that the data pertain to an investigation, and a program manager must approve the request. But a search warrant and the consent of a judge are not required.

Lillian Reyes is a Tampa pill mill lawyer at Joyce & Reyes Law Firm. To learn more to contact a personal injury lawyer visit http://www.joyceandreyespa.com/ or call 1.888.771.1529.

Documentary Film Illustrates Elder Abuse Lessons

Everyone knows Florida is a retirement magnet for seniors, and because they tend to flock here in large numbers, there are many nursing homes for them. Where there are large numbers of nursing homes, there is also the potential for abuse.

Typically, such abuse may be thought of as physical, such as striking or pushing. Neglect is another type of abuse, as many nursing home occupants need a great deal of attention and care, and staff are often stretched thin. Financial abuse can occur in nursing homes as well. Recently, a documentary about famed actor Mickey Rooney illustrated some of the financial abuse issues in nursing homes. Rooney was invited to testify before Congress about the financial abuse he suffered at the hands of his own family.

The film’s producer, Pamela Glasner, had a personal brush with a similar form of abuse. While Glasner’s father was residing at a Florida nursing home, a stranger to the family represented himself to the nursing home as Glasner’s brother. The man was intent on stealing Glasner’s father’s money, and knew that when seniors call police, they are likely to be presumed confused, and their complaints dismissed.

Glasner also said that some perpetrators of elder financial abuse target churches with large congregations of seniors to identify potential victims. The heartlessness of these criminals is chilling, and they are too often successful in their schemes. Seniors often live in social isolation and have no one to reach out to if they are being targeted for abuse. Moreover, if they are suffering from any mental decline such as memory loss, they may not even understand that they are victims.

To contact a Tampa nursing home abuse lawyer, visit http://www.joyceandreyespa.com/