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Court Discusses Evidence Needed to Sustain a New York Pediatric Malpractice Claim

The crux of any New York medical malpractice is harm caused by the deviation from the standard of care. As such, regardless of the severity of injuries suffered by a plaintiff, if the plaintiff cannot establish that the injuries were caused by the defendant healthcare provider’s negligence, the plaintiff cannot recover compensation. This was reiterated in a recent New York pediatric malpractice case in which the court ruled that the plaintiff’s evidence was insufficient to allow the plaintiff to prove liability as a matter of law. If you or a loved one sustained injury due to inadequate care rendered by a pediatrician, it is advisable to confer with a Syracuse pediatric malpractice attorney adept at assisting injured parties in the pursuit of damages.

Facts of the Case

It is reported that the plaintiff child was taken to the defendant pediatrician by her parents with various complaints.  She was examined, but no diagnostic tests were administered, and she was not admitted to the hospital. She was ultimately diagnosed with numerous serious and permanent conditions, including congestive heart failure, viral myocarditis, and cardiopulmonary failure. The plaintiff subsequently filed a malpractice lawsuit against the defendant and numerous other providers, alleging they caused her grave harm by failing to diagnose her in a timely manner. The defendant moved for dismissal of the plaintiff’s claims against her via summary judgment. The trial court denied the defendant’s motion. The defendant appealed, however, and on appeal, the appellate court reversed, dismissing the plaintiff’s claims against the defendant.

Establishing Liability for Hospital Malpractice

On appeal, the court stated that the trial court erred in refusing to dismiss the plaintiff’s claims against the defendant, as the defendant set forth evidence via an expert affidavit that she did not depart from good and accepted medical practice, and that regardless, any alleged departure did not cause the plaintiff’s harm. Additionally, the court noted that the defendant’s affidavit was specific, detailed, and factual in nature, and addressed each allegation of negligence set forth by the plaintiff.

The court specifically noted that the trial court erred in finding that the affidavit did not address the plaintiff’s allegation that the defendant acted negligently in failing to admit the plaintiff to the hospital. Specifically, the affidavit stated that given the plaintiff’s presentation and health history, there was no basis for the defendant to recommend any other treatment, tests, or consultations. The court found that the assertion that no additional treatment was necessary was sufficient to establish that admission to a hospital was not warranted.  Further, the court found that the plaintiff’s expert affidavit in response to the defendant’s was lacking, in that it did not establish that the expert reviewed any evidence in the case. Thus, the court dismissed the plaintiff’s claims as to the defendant.

Speak with an Experienced Malpractice Attorney

If you or your child suffered injuries due to insufficient medical treatment by a pediatrician, it is wise to speak with an experienced Syracuse pediatric malpractice attorney to discuss what evidence you must produce to be awarded compensation. The dedicated attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano, LLP Personal Injury Lawyers will gather any evidence in support of your claims and develop effective arguments in support of your recovery of damages. We can be reached through our form online or at 315-479-9000 to schedule a meeting.

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