Serving Clients Throughout Upstate New York with Multiple Convenient Locations Syracuse | Oneida | Watertown | New Hartford | Binghamton | Cortland | Rochester | Oswego | Albany | Buffalo

Court Explains Indemnification in New York Medical Malpractice Cases

In many instances involving complex health issues, multiple practitioners will be involved in a patient’s care. If the treatment offered is inadequate, though, and consequently causes a patient to suffer harm, the providers may attempt to assign blame to one another and seek indemnification for any losses attributed to them. As discussed in a recent New York case, however, healthcare providers pursuing indemnification claims face a high burden of proof. If you were hurt by an incompetent treatment team, it is in your best interest to confer with a Rochester medical malpractice attorney at your earliest convenience.

History of the Case

It is reported that the defendant health care agency provided services to the decedent in the winger of 2012. The defendant doctor also cared for and treated the decedent during that time. The plaintiff subsequently filed a lawsuit against the defendants, alleging medical malpractice, violation of Public Health Law, and negligence, asserting that the defendants failed to provide proper care for the decedent’s pressure ulcers. The defendant doctor then filed a third party complaint asserting an indemnification claim against the defendant health care agency. The defendant health care agency filed a motion for summary judgment as to the indemnification claim.

Indemnification in Medical Malpractice Cases

The court considered the nature of the indemnification claim, emphasizing that if the defendant doctor was found liable, he would be responsible for his comparative share of damages as an active tortfeasor, as there was no relationship or legal obligation entitling him to indemnification from the defendant home health care agency.

Regarding the indemnification claim, the defendant home health care agency asserted that its treatment adhered to reasonable home health aide practice and did not cause the decedent’s injuries. It supported its motion with an expert affirmation from an emergency medicine physician, who opined that defendant home health care agency’s care was within the standard of practice. As such, the court noted that the defendant home health care agency had met its burden for summary judgment, shifting the responsibility to the defendant doctor to produce evidence contradicting Alpine’s claims.

Further, the court found the defendant doctor failed to adequately support his indemnification claim. He presented an expert affirmation from a geriatric medicine specialist, criticizing the defendant home health care agency care but his opinions were deemed conclusory and lacking specificity on dates, causation, and proper medical and nursing practices. As such, the court deemed his opinions insufficient to defeat summary judgment and granted the defendant home health care agency’s motion.

Talk to a Dedicated Rochester Medical Malpractice Lawyer

Doctors are expected to provide their patients with skilled care regardless of the treatment setting, and if they do not, it may constitute medical malpractice. If you sustained damages due to the carelessness of your treatment provider, you could be owed compensation, and you should talk to a lawyer. The dedicated Rochester medical malpractice attorneys of DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers take pride in helping people seek justice for their losses, and if you hire us, we will advocate zealously on your behalf. You can reach us by calling 833-200-2000 or using our online form to set up a conference.

Super Lawyers
Justia Lawyer Rating
Rue Ratings - Best Attorneys of America
Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
National Association of Distinguished Counsel
Avvo Rating
Martindalle Hubbel
Best Law Firms
Contact Information