Court Discusses Summary Judgment in Favor of Plaintiffs in Medical Malpractice Cases

When people visit medical facilities for emergent care, they generally expect the care to be competent. Unfortunately, however, emergency medical staff can sometimes fail to address concerning symptoms causing a patient to suffer a rapid decline. In such cases, the injured party may be able to pursue claims against the parties responsible for their damages. While it may seem as if liability is clear in many medical malpractice cases, whether the treatment providers will be deemed negligent as a matter of law depends on the sufficiency of the evidence produced by the plaintiff, as discussed in a recent opinion delivered by a Maryland Court. If you sustained injuries due to the carelessness of a treatment provider, you may be owed damages, and you should contact a trusted Maryland medical malpractice lawyer to assess your options.

The Decedent’s Care

It is alleged that the decedent was treated at the defendants’ facility for psychiatric issues. The defendants did not provide non-psychiatric care; instead, if they observed that a patient suffered from issues that required medical attention, they would refer the patient to specialty care. While the decedent was an in-patient in the facility, he developed edema in his legs, pitting, and balance and mobility issues, and reported extreme pain. The defendants’ staff members did not physically assess his legs, however. The decedent died during his admission and the plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the defendants asserting medical negligence claims and other causes of action. The plaintiff then moved for a ruling in his favor via summary judgment.

Sufficiency of Medical Malpractice Allegations

The court declined to grant the plaintiff’s motion noting that he did not offer sufficient support for his claims that defendants should be held liable for medical negligence to garner judgment in his favor as a matter of law. Specifically, his assertions mostly included illustrations that showed the changes to the decedent’s body in the last days of his life. He also set forth statements alleging that the facts showed the defendants’ staff completely departed from the duty owed on the decedent’s last days and that the defendants’ failure to visualize the decedent’s legs and conduct pain assessments constituted negligence as a matter of law.

Although the defendants did not directly respond to the plaintiff’s motion for summary judgment with regard to the medical negligence claim the court nonetheless declined to grant his motion. The court noted that the plaintiff bears the burden of proving medical negligence as a matter of law when setting forth a motion for summary judgment on the issue. Here, while the court found that the plaintiff set forth sufficient evidence for a jury to rule in his favor on the medical negligence issue, the evidence was not so compelling that no reasonable jury could not find that there was no negligence. Thus, the court denied his motion.

Talk to an Experienced Maryland Medical Malpractice Attorney

Incompetent medical care can cause significant pain and suffering, and anyone harmed by such care has the right to pursue claims against the provider that caused their injuries. If you sustained losses due to medical negligence it is smart to speak to an attorney about your rights. The experienced Maryland attorneys of Arfaa Law Group can examine your losses and inform you of what damages you may be able to recover. You can reach us via our online form or at (410) 889-1850 to set up a meeting.



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