Justpoint is a database of hundreds of thousands of past settlements which is used to determine the right lawyer to advocate for certain clients. The database works in all aspects of health care such as being prescribed the wrong medication or surgical negligence.(Stock Image by Masterfile)

By Nadine Matthews
Special to the AFRO

While growing up in Brazil, Victor Bornstein almost lost his mother to breast cancer. In an interview with the AFRO he recalled, “My mother had a misdiagnosis that almost killed her. She was in a coma for two weeks,” recalled Bornstein, a co-founder of technology company Justpoint. “I was very young and we were fortunate that she recovered but it was very scary.” He explained that at the time his family “didn’t even think about legal action.” Bornstein’s mom, a single mother, was able to go back to work and provide for the family.

He explained that Justpoint “Helps people after a misdiagnosis and they have damages, issues that injured them.” He pointed out that many people don’t know how to effectively and efficiently navigate the judicial system as they seek compensation for their injuries.”It can be tough for patients to deal with because many of the lawyers feel like used car salesmen,” he stated. “It’s tough to find someone who is credible, and who is good.”

Bornstein said Justpoint helps people navigate the judicial system. “We don’t charge them anything, we just find the right lawyer for them,” he said. 

In his former working life, Bornstein stated he “developed technologies for hospital systems.” He also taught. While working as a professor of Health Technology at New York City’s Mount Sinai hospital, he realized that although there was a lot of technology that made improvements at the hospitals, there wasn’t anything being developed specifically for the patient’s overall best interests. He decided to branch out on his own and create this himself. 

He and Oleksandr Zakharcuk co-founded Justpoint three years ago. “Oleksandr has the technical background,” he stated. “And I have a health care background.” Bornstein’s search for a co-founder was itself entirely technical. “I reached out to two hundred people online- cold emails.” Bornstein, who is part Nicaraguan, Brazilian, and Chilean, ended up finding Zaharcuk, who used to work at Google.”

Some of the criteria they use to find the right lawyers for their clients include, he says, “The amount of knowledge and how much effort they will put in.” He explains that there are lawyers who unwisely advise settling the case for less money. “This might work for the attorney. But for the patient this might not make the most sense,” said Bornstein. “So we identify the attorneys who are the best at the type of claim this patient is looking for, and who will put in the most effort for their clients.”

Justpoint created a database of hundreds of thousands of past settlements which they use to determine the right lawyer to advocate for certain clients. “We have historical data of previous performance outcomes for lawyers,” he explained.

To get the information for the database, they worked with law firms who were happy to share the information. “The law firms said ‘If you can find plaintiffs that match with our criteria, that would be interesting for us as well.’” In addition, Bornstein and Zakharcuk used insurance companies, court documents, and info from patients. 

At present, Justpoint works in all aspects of health care such as being prescribed the wrong medication or surgical negligence. He has dealt with cases where people who do not have breast cancer, for instance, are diagnosed as having it and undergo grueling chemotherapy with long term side effects.

With COVID, there was a spike in mis-diagnoses because “hospitals became overworked.” Even so, Bornstein believes patients should not just accept mistakes because the system is overburdened. “Hospitals have insurance for these types of things such as if someone has their wrong leg amputated for instance because the staff is overworked. We understand that, but hospitals also have to have empathy. The patient now has a different quality of life.”

“As happens with a lot of medical issues,” Bornstein stated “women are often victims more than men especially since medical school education tends to focus on men.”  He also emphasized that breast cancer and strokes are often issues. With regard to strokes, it’s because men and women have different symptoms. “The frustrating thing is that women will go to a hospital with a stroke, be misdiagnosed, and sent back home. But with a stroke, every second counts.”

Bornstein also explains that race can play a factor. “Each ethnicity has different genetic codes. They have capacities for different diseases, different issues but those that affect male caucasians are more studied than issues that affect minorities.”

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