Why It’s Important to Figure Out When Your Vaccine Injury Symptoms Started
In any vaccine injury case, you must prove that your adverse symptoms happened because of the vaccine. To do this, you have to figure out the date your vaccine injury symptoms began. In the Vaccine Injury Table, the government identifies how much time symptoms of a vaccine injury to appear after receiving a covered vaccination.
For each covered vaccine, there is an illness, disability, injury, or condition that is also covered under the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. However, in order to receive compensation for that injury or condition, the injury or illness must have occurred inside the time period identified by the Vaccine Injury Table.
For example, a woman alleges that the DTap vaccine caused her Shoulder Injury Related to Vaccine Administration (SIRVA). But the Vaccine Court will only presume that the DTap vaccine caused SIRVA if the injury manifested within 48 hours of receiving the vaccine. See Vaccine Injury Table 42 U.S.C. 300aa-14(c).
The Importance of Documenting a Vaccine Injury
The Court strictly interprets the Vaccine Injury Table. If you file a vaccine injury case, they will review your medical records with a fine-toothed comb to confirm that the alleged injury falls within the time period listed on the Table. Because of this, our clients who may have waited days, weeks, or months to go get treatment for their injuries run into a problem. The Court will look at that delay as a reason to dispute their claim.
How do we combat that issue?
What happens if you waited beyond the 48-hour window to get treatment for SIRVA? There are other ways for us to document your injury. Here are a few ideas:
Filing an Affidavit
We will always have our clients prepare an affidavit to file along with their vaccine injury petitions. In the affidavit, our client provides written testimony about their injury. This is a good way to add context to your injury outside of the medical records. It also provides a claimant an opportunity to describe when and how his or her vaccine injury symptoms began.
Gathering Witness Statements from People You Know
We will also ask other people to provide affidavits in support of your petition. Your family members, friends, or co-workers can provide additional evidence regarding when and how your injury occurred.
Keeping Track of Medications and Medical Equipment
Some of our clients will start taking over-the-counter medications for an injury or start to use medical equipment like a brace. If possible, we will ask our clients to try to retrieve receipts for these items to further document when an injury occurred.
Phone Calls to Your Doctor
Sometimes our clients will call their doctors before actually coming in for an appointment. Doctors’ offices should make a record of each time one of their patients calls in. To the extent these phone calls are not documented in the medical records, we want to know each time our client contacted his or her doctor so we can attempt to retrieve documentation of those calls.
Taking Photographs and Videos
Photographs and videos document an injury and also serve as a timeline for the progression of the injury. With such easy access to cameras, a lot of our clients will take photos of an injury immediately, and they often come in handy later on.
If You Have a Vaccine Injury, Seek Treatment Immediately
These are just a few ways we can try to get around the issue of a claimant who delays seeking medical treatment after a vaccine injury. The best course of action, of course, is to try to seek treatment for an injury as soon as possible. Follow the advice of your doctors for any continued care and treatment.
Injured by a vaccine? Contact us today for a free consultation
We represent people from all over the United States who have been injured by a vaccine. If you believe you have been injured due to a vaccine, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact us for a free case review today.