Individuals who have suffered an injury due to a botched surgery can face many hardships. Surgical malpractice may cause patients to suffer serious injuries and may be fatal in some cases. A recent trend involves patients seeking medical treatment overseas due to a variety of reasons, mainly involving the costs associated with elective procedures which are not covered by insurance. Unfortunately, as is too often the case, many foreign countries do not have the same standards for health care and medical treatment as can be found in the U.S.A. When a mishap occurs overseas, a patient or their family may have a remedy limited by the laws of that country or they may have no remedy at all.
Recently, a young woman died as a result of a botched plastic surgical procedure performed in the Dominican Republic according to an article in the New York Daily News. This 25-year old Bronx mother of two died from what was a likely act of medical malpractice in the Dominican Republic. Had this surgical procedure occurred in New York with the same tragic outcome, New York law would provide a remedy for her loved ones to ensure that the responsible parties could be held civilly liable. In this way, her children would potentially receive some financial security as some compensation for the loss of their mother.
However, when a tragedy like this occurs due to negligence in a foreign country like the Dominican Republic, New York law may not apply and their likely will be no basis to sue the culprit surgeon in New York absent a showing of some connections to New York. The most likely situation will be one wherein any lawsuit will have to be brought in the Dominican Republic and subject to their laws. This is not a factor for many people in deciding to have elective surgery in a foreign country, but it is an unfortunate reality when something goes wrong.