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New York Court Analyzes Negligence Versus Medical Malpractice Claims

Accidents that occur in the context of medical care may give rise to negligence claims. In many instances, though, such incidents arise out of a medical professional’s failure to comply with the standard of care, and therefore, any claims seeking damages for harm suffered in such incidents sound in medical malpractice. Recently, a New York court discussed the differences between negligence and medical malpractice claims asserted against health care providers in a matter in which the nature of the plaintiff’s claims was disputed. If you were injured by the carelessness of a medical professional, you have the right to seek damages, and it is in your best interest to speak to a Syracuse medical malpractice lawyer as soon as possible.

The Plaintiff’s Harm

It is reported that the decedent, who was 85 years old, was admitted to the defendant rehabilitation center after he underwent the surgical implantation of a pacemaker. He left briefly to undergo another surgery but returned to the defendant center. A short time later, he collapsed while walking from the bathroom to his bed. He ultimately died due to injuries sustained in the fall. The plaintiff then filed a lawsuit against the defendant, seeking damages for medical malpractice and negligence. Following the conclusion of discovery, the defendant filed a motion for summary judgment. The court ultimately denied the motion to the extent it sought to dismiss the portion of the claim asserting liability for the failure to provide the decedent with a bed alarm, which the court determined sounded in ordinary negligence. The defendant then appealed.

Negligence Versus Medical Malpractice

The appellate court explained that the core component of the claim that the defendant failed to provide the decedent with a bed alarm that would have prevented him from falling is that it misjudged his condition and the level of supervision required to keep him from falling, which constitutes medical malpractice. As such, the defendant bore the initial burden of proving either that no deviation from good and established medical practice occurred or that such deviation was not a proximate cause of the decedent’s injuries. The appellate court found that the defendant met this burden, but in response, the plaintiff failed to illustrate the presence of a triable question of fact. As such, the appellate court found that the trial court should have granted the defendant’s motion dismissing that portion of the lawsuit alleging a failure to equip the decedent with a bed alarm.

Speak to a Dedicated Syracuse Medical Malpractice Attorney

Medical oversights and errors may constitute negligence, but in most instances, they are grounds for pursuing medical malpractice claims. If you were harmed by the inattentiveness of a healthcare provider, you could be owed compensation, and you should speak to a lawyer regarding your potential claims. The dedicated attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers are adept at proving incompetent medical professionals should be held accountable for the harm they cause, and if you hire us, we will work tirelessly on your behalf. You can reach us through our online form or by calling us at 833-200-2000 to set up a meeting.





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