You information did not address whether it was the jail personnel who gave these orders or whether it was medical personnel at thejail clinic. One might have a medmal component but not if it was the jailer. In either event, there may be a cause of action and only a lawyer familiar with actions of these sort in Fl. can answer definatively. I would say, that depending on your charges, there may be a lack of jury sympathy which is a main ingredient in every case. Many penal institutions substitute generic medications, there would have to be some clear difference in the meds to cause the decisions made to fall below the standard of care required.
You may have a cause of action but because the lack of medication caused no permanent injury it would be hard to show strong evidence on the damages side to make up for the prejudice you will receive since this happened in jail. Juries typically only award large damage awards in jail negligence cases to severe permanent injuries.
I agree with Mr. Young and Mr. Wolfe that you need severe and permanent injuries to make these cases worth pursuing. When a jail or prison is involved, there are generally two causes of action that potentially arise. The first is a claim under the 8th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution for deliberate indifference. The 8th Amendment prohibits cruel and unusual punishment to prisoners. Deliberately refusing medical care to a prisoner in need of it violates this provision and gives rise to a cause of action in Federal Court. In these cases, the prisoner must prove that the prison guards or officials intentionally refused necessary medical care to the prisoner. Medical malpractice alone does not rise to the level of deliberate indifference in these claims.
There may also be a cause of action for medical malpractice under existing state laws for failure to render proper medical care to a prisoner. Generally, these causes of action require that the prisoner prove medical malpractice under a negligence standard.
Under either type of case (and an action can be instituted for both), the prisoner must show permanent injury of a substantial nature to justify the expense in pursing the matter. Qualified medical malpractice lawyers will not take cases that will leave the client with little or nothing after payment of the expert expenses. In these cases, those expenses may be even higher because you may need a prison medicine expert and a physician who specializes in the type of care you received. I have successfully handled several of these cases, including one where medication was not given, but the injuries resulted in death of the prisoner.
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