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New York medical malpractice lawsuits, like all civil claims, are governed by statutes of limitations. As such, if a plaintiff does not pursue his or her claim within the time limitations set forth under the law, he or she waives the right to recover. In some cases, however, the statute of limitations may be tolled by the continuous treatment doctrine, which allows the injured party additional time to pursue his or her claim.

The Supreme Court of New York, Appellate Division, recently explained the continuous treatment doctrine, in a case in which it ruled that the plaintiff’s claim was not barred by the statute of limitations due to the application of the doctrine.  If you were injured by substandard medical care, you should contact an experienced  Rochester medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options for seeking damages.

Factual and Procedural Background

Reportedly, the plaintiff underwent hip replacement surgery at the defendant hospital on July 9, 2008. She filed a Complaint alleging medical malpractice against the defendant hospital and defendant surgeon on December 16, 2013. The defendants filed a motion for summary judgment arguing that the Complaint was filed more than two years and six months after the plaintiff ceased treatment with the defendants and that therefore, the action was barred by the statute of limitations. The plaintiff opposed the motion, arguing that she continued treating until November 26, 2011, which was less than two and a half years before she filed her lawsuit. The trial court granted the defendants’ motion, after which the plaintiff appealed.

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When people think of a medical malpractice claim, they often imagine a botched surgery or misdiagnosis. Medical malpractice can encompass a wide range of a medical care provider’s behavior, however, including the sexualization of a patient-doctor relationship. Therefore, it is important to be mindful of the procedural laws regarding any claim against a medical provider for any inappropriate treatment, to avoid waiving the right to pursue damages.

This was demonstrated in a case decided by the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York in which the court held that a plaintiff’s claim that a psychiatrist fraudulently induced her into a sexual relationship was a medical malpractice claim governed by the two-and-a-half year statute of limitations. If you suffered harm due to a medical provider’s inappropriate care, you should meet with a trusted Rochester medical malpractice attorney to discuss your case and develop a plan for seeking compensation.

Allegations Regarding the Plaintiff’s Treatment

Reportedly, the plaintiff began treating with the defendant psychiatrist in 1992. Eleven years after her treatment began, the defendant allegedly told the plaintiff that if she had sex with him it would improve her marriage and her mental health. He further advised the plaintiff that if she did not have sex with him, it would be detrimental to her health and marriage. The plaintiff submitted to the defendant’s request based on reliance on his statements and engaged in a sexual relationship with the defendant until 2012 when she ceased treatment. The plaintiff subsequently filed a lawsuit against the defendant, alleging the defendant fraudulently induced her into a sexual relationship, which caused her to develop post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, financial harm, and caused the end of her marriage. The defendant filed a motion to dismiss the plaintiff’s claim as time-barred, which the court granted. The plaintiff appealed.

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In any case where it is alleged that inadequate treatment rendered by a medical care provider caused a person harm it is important to retain any evidence that supports the inference of medical malpractice. If a person loses or destroys evidence of the quality of the care rendered, it may not only affect the person’s case, it may result in sanctions or the case being dismissed altogether.

The appellate division of the Supreme Court of New York recently discussed the standard for taking adverse action against the plaintiff due to the loss of evidence. In doing so, the court affirmed that the plaintiff was not responsible for the loss of evidence and should not face sanctions. If you were harmed by inadequate medical care, it is crucial to keep any evidence of the treatment you received and to retain a skilled  Rochester medical malpractice attorney to assist you in your pursuit of damages from the providers who caused your harm.

Facts Regarding the Evidence in Question

Reportedly, the plaintiff filed a medical malpractice suit against the defendant doctor. At some point prior to commencing the subject lawsuit, the plaintiff obtained mammography films from the hospital where they were taken and gave them to another facility for continuing treatment. The plaintiff was not in possession of the films at any time after she gave them to the second facility. After the lawsuit was filed, it became evident that no one could locate the plaintiff’s mammography films. As such, the defendant filed a motion to strike the Complaint, alleging spoliation of the evidence. The trial court denied the motion, after which the defendant appealed.

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In a medical malpractice lawsuit, both the plaintiff and defendant have burdens of proof that they must meet to win the case. If a defendant meets the burden of proof of producing evidence, that on its face shows no substandard treatment, the case may be dismissed unless the plaintiff rebuts the defendant’s evidence by showing there is a triable issue of fact.

This was illustrated in a recent New York appellate court case in which the court overturned a trial court ruling granting the defendants’ motion for summary judgment, where the appellate court found there was a triable issue. If you suffered harm due to insufficient care or monitoring in a hospital you, should meet with an experienced Rochester medical malpractice attorney to determine whether you may be able to seek damages from the hospital and any doctor that treated you.

Factual Allegations

Reportedly, the plaintiff was admitted to the defendant hospital with stroke symptoms. At some point after he was admitted, he fell out of his hospital bed. The plaintiff and his wife subsequently filed a medical malpractice lawsuit against the defendant hospital and the defendant physician that treated him at the hospital. Following discovery, the defendants filed a motion for summary judgment, which the trial court granted. The plaintiffs then appealed.

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A rare but serious example of medical malpractice is a surgeon inadvertently leaving an object inside of a patient following surgery. Under New York law, the statute of limitations for pursuing a medical malpractice claim differs when the claim involves the discovery of a foreign object within the body of the patient.

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York recently addressed what constitutes a foreign body in a case where it was disputed whether the plaintiff filed his lawsuit within the statute of limitations. If you suffered injuries or illness due to a foreign object that was left inside of your body following a surgery, you should consult a knowledgeable Rochester medical malpractice attorney to discuss your case.

The Plaintiff’s Surgery

Allegedly, the plaintiff underwent surgery at the defendant hospital in 1993, during which a ureteral stent was inserted. The plaintiff alleged the defendant carelessly failed to remove the stent which caused him harm. The stent was not discovered by the plaintiff until 2012, and the plaintiff filed a medical malpractice action against the defendant in 2013. The defendant denied that it placed the stent in the plaintiff, but it no longer had the surgical records to support the argument. Further, the defendant argued that even if it had placed the stent the plaintiff’s action should be dismissed because it was not filed within the time period set forth in the applicable statute of limitations. As such, the defendant filed a motion for summary judgment, which the trial court denied. The defendant subsequently appealed.

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Doctors are obligated to provide care that comports with the standard practices of an average doctor in the same field in his or her community. In cases where medical malpractice is alleged, the plaintiff is required to show a deviation from the standard of care and harm resulting from the deviation. In turn, doctors may be able to assert a defense to explain their deviation, such as the emergency doctrine, which allows them to avoid liability.

The emergency doctrine only applies in certain circumstances, however, as was recently explained in an opinion issued by the Supreme Court of New York. If you suffered harm due to inappropriate care, you should meet with a skilled Rochester medical malpractice attorney to develop a plan to seek damages from the responsible parties.

Facts Regarding the Patient’s Treatment

Reportedly, the patient underwent surgery on her cervical spine. Because of swelling in her neck, the patient underwent a tracheotomy and tracheostomy five days after the surgery, in which a hole was cut into her windpipe and a tube was placed into her windpipe so that she could breathe. Following the surgery, she was walking around and talking. A few days after the tracheostomy was placed, a nurse met resistance placing an inner tube into the tracheostomy tube and the patient became short of breath. The nurse attempted to suction the tube but the patient’s oxygen levels dropped and she lost consciousness. The nurse then paged the defendant, an anesthesiologist.

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In cases where the issues presented are a beyond the scope of understanding of the average person, one or both parties will introduce experts to offer opinions on disputed facts and theories of liability. For example, the vast majority of medical malpractice cases require one or more experts to opine that the medical provider in question breached the standard of care and the breach resulted in the subsequent harm.

Recently, in a case applying New York law, the District Court for the Northern District of New York held that the expert report provided by the plaintiff in a medical malpractice case was sufficient to allow the case to proceed, despite the defendants’ arguments to the contrary. If you or a loved one suffered harm due to inadequate care or a missed diagnosis, it is in your best interest to meet with an experienced Rochester medical malpractice attorney to assist you in your pursuit of damages from the negligent providers.

Facts Surrounding the Patient’s Care and Subsequent Death

Reportedly, the patient complained of chest pains and lost consciousness, after which he was transported to the defendant hospital’s emergency department. The defendant doctor, who worked in the emergency department, examined the patient physically, monitored his vital signs and ordered various tests. The defendant doctor ultimately diagnosed the patient with vasovagal syncope, dehydration, reactive airway disease and wheezing. He prescribed the patient medication and saline and discharged the patient. Additionally, the defendant doctor referred the patient to a clinic for a follow-up appointment where he would be re-evaluated and directed him to go to the follow-up appointment two to four days.

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To successfully prove medical malpractice under New York law, an injured party must show that his or her medical provider deviated from the accepted standard of care, and the deviation was the cause of any harm alleged. In almost all medical malpractice cases, the opinion of one or more experts is needed to show the standard of care, whether there was any deviation from the standard, and whether the deviation was the cause of the injured party’s harm. In cases where both the injured party and medical provider introduce expert testimony supporting their position, it is up to the jury to assess which evidence is more compelling.

As recently illustrated in a case decided by the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of New York, a court will not overturn the jury’s findings absent clear evidence to the contrary. If you or a loved one was injured due to insufficient medical care, you should consult a skilled Rochester medical malpractice attorney to discuss whether you may be able to recover compensation from the negligent providers.

Procedural Background

Reportedly, the infant plaintiff’s mother, on behalf of the plaintiff and herself, instituted a case against the defendant obstetrician alleging that negligent care provided during the infant plaintiff’s birth caused brain injuries and permanent neurocognitive damage. Specifically, it was alleged that the defendant obstetrician improperly used a vacuum extraction method to deliver the infant plaintiff. Following a trial, a jury found in favor of the plaintiffs. The defendant appealed, arguing the verdict was against the weight of the evidence. On appeal, the court affirmed.

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In the New York courts, a plaintiff seeking the recovery of damages in a medical malpractice case must set forth certain evidence regarding the treating medical provider’s inappropriate care, or his or her claim will be dismissed. If the plaintiff meets this burden, the burden then shifts to the treating provider to show the care was appropriate.

As recently illustrated in a case decided by the appellate division of the Supreme Court of New York, plaintiffs pursuing medical malpractice actions will be permitted to proceed on their claim unless the defendant medical providers can irrefutably show no breach of the standard of care. If you sustained harm due to inadequate or negligent medical care, you should meet with an experienced Rochester medical malpractice attorney to review the facts of your case and whether you may be able to recover compensation from the medical provider that caused your impairment.

Facts Regarding the Plaintiff’s Treatment

Reportedly, the plaintiff gave birth in August 2012 at the defendant hospital. Forceps were used by the first physician during the delivery. Following the delivery, the first physician left the delivery room. The plaintiff then underwent an episiotomy repair that was performed by a second physician.  The plaintiff subsequently filed an action against both physicians and the hospital for medical malpractice related to complications arising from the episiotomy and its repair. At the close of discovery, the first physician filed a motion to have the claims against him dismissed. The court denied the motion, after which the first physician appealed.

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Stem cell therapy is becoming more and more popular both in New York and across the country, but it can often put patients at risk. If you have been injured due to stem cell therapy, you need to contact our hard-working and reputable Rochester medical malpractice attorneys who can assess the merits of your case. At DeFrancisco & Falgiatano Personal Injury Lawyers, we are committed to investigating the circumstances surrounding your injury and determining your legal rights and options accordingly.

Stem Cell Therapy

Stem cells are notable for their ability to regenerate or to become any cell. For this reason, there has been great confidence and enthusiasm surrounding stem cells as a form of medicine to treat various ailments. However, much of the treatment’s application remains unproven and many medical facilities are keen to monetize the trend, even if the efficacy of treatment is questionable, or unsafe. Many times, doctors do not warn patients about potential dangers associated with treatment or inform them that the treatment is actually not FDA approved.

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