Articles Posted in Primary Care Malpractice

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In medical malpractice cases in the state of New York, the plaintiff will typically need to produce an expert report to demonstrate that the defendant violated the standard of care. While generally, the expert will be a person that practices in the same specialty as the defendant, a practitioner that specializes in a different area of medicine than the defendant may be qualified to opine as an expert in certain circumstances. This was discussed in a recent New York case in which the court reversed the dismissal of a plaintiff’s primary care malpractice case. If you were injured by incompetent care provided by a doctor in a primary care practice, it is critical to contact a skillful Syracuse primary care malpractice attorney to discuss what damages you may be able to recover.

History of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff visited the defendant primary care physician with complaints of neck pain,  scalp sensitivity, headaches, and other complaints. The defendant diagnosed the plaintiff with cervicalgia. Approximately a week later, the plaintiff’s daughter called the defendant and advised him that the plaintiff was suffering from vision loss. The defendant then advised that the plaintiff visit a specialist. The plaintiff was subsequently diagnosed with temporal arteritis and suffered irreversible blindness as a result.

Allegedly, the plaintiff then filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant. The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, asking the court to dismiss the plaintiff’s claims. The defendant argued, in part, that the plaintiff’s expert report lacked probative value because it was provided by a doctor that practiced in general surgery rather than internal medicine. The court granted the defendant’s motion, and plaintiff appealed.

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In some instances, while it is evident that a person suffered harm due to inadequate medical care, the identity of each physician that provided incompetent care will not immediately be clear. Although a plaintiff seeking damages in a medical malpractice lawsuit can add additional defendants after the lawsuit is filed, he or she generally must do so within the statute of limitations. There are some exceptions, however, such as when the relation-back doctrine applies. In a recent primary care malpractice case, a New York appellate court discussed the elements a plaintiff must prove for the relation-doctrine to apply. If you suffered damages due to negligent care from your primary care physician, it is advisable to consult a trusted Syracuse primary care malpractice attorney regarding your harm.

Factual Background

Allegedly, the plaintiff’s decedent presented to her primary care physician’s office for outpatient care, following a diagnosis of ulcerative colitis. During her visit, she was treated by the defendant physician. She was admitted to the hospital the day after her visit, for complications due to her colitis. She returned to her primary care physician’s office a month after she was discharged from the hospital and was treated by a non-party physician employed by the defendant physician. Shortly thereafter, she returned to the hospital, where it was revealed that she had a gangrenous and perforated colon. She died one week later.

It is reported that the plaintiff filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant. After conducting the depositions of the defendant and the non-party physician, the plaintiff moved to add the non-party physician as a defendant. The court granted the plaintiff’s motion, and the defendant appealed, arguing that the statute of limitations barred any additional claims.

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Not all medical malpractice cases arise out of bodily harm; rather, in some instances, a medical malpractice case will arise out of the alleged breach of patient-doctor confidentiality. Regardless of the harm alleged, however, it is critical for the plaintiff to prove he or she suffered actual damages. This was explained in a recent primary care malpractice case in which the court found that a genuine issue of fact existed as to whether the defendant harmed the plaintiff, precluding dismissal via summary judgment. If you sustained damages due to a negligent primary care physician, it is wise to speak with a skillful Syracuse primary care malpractice attorney to discuss your potential damages.

Factual Background

It is reported that the plaintiff, who worked as a schoolteacher, began suffering from respiratory issues while at work. She attempted numerous treatments, but her symptoms persisted. Approximately a year later, the superintendent of the school district that employed the plaintiff asked the defendant primary care physician to examine the plaintiff pursuant to Education Law 913 to determine if the plaintiff was able to perform her job duties. The defendant examined the plaintiff and then sent a report of his findings to the superintendent.

Allegedly, the defendant annexed medical records from other providers that he received from the plaintiff to the report. The plaintiff then filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant, alleging he violated patient-doctor confidentiality by disclosing the records she provided to him. The defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, which the trial court denied. The defendant then appealed.

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While most medical malpractice cases are straightforward and merely allege harm caused by inadequate care provided by a doctor, some cases allege a physician should be held liable for inappropriate acts committed by a third party. In a recent case, the Supreme Court of New York, Bronx County analyzed whether a primary care physician could be held liable under for medical malpractice for criminal acts committed by a physical therapist the plaintiff was referred to by the physician. If you sustained harm due to the negligent care or referral of a primary care physician, it is prudent to meet with a trusted Syracuse primary care physician malpractice attorney as soon as possible to discuss whether you may be entitled to compensation.

Facts Regarding the Plaintiff’s Treatment

It is reported that the plaintiff treated with the defendant neurologist who diagnosed the plaintiff with a concussion and a spinal injury. The defendant neurologist prescribed physical therapy for the plaintiff and then referred the plaintiff to the defendant primary care physician (PCP). In turn, the primary care cleared the plaintiff for physical therapy following a physical examination. The plaintiff underwent physical therapy with the defendant student therapist, at the direction of the defendant PCP.

Allegedly, during one of the therapy sessions, the defendant student sexually assaulted the plaintiff. The plaintiff subsequently filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendants alleging, in part, that the defendant PCP improperly prescribed medications and physical therapy, and knew or should have known that the defendant student would engage in sexual abuse and failed to protect the plaintiff from harm. The defendant PCP filed a motion for summary judgment, which the court ultimately granted.

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