En EspaƱol Get Your Free Case Review Today! Main Menu
In Houston
Toll Free

Supreme Court Rules Against Patient, Again

Photo of Jay Jackson

Last week, the supreme court threw out another suit brought by an injured patient. The case, the latest of numerous rulings against patients, was Harris Methodist Fort Worth v. Ollie, ___ S.W.3d ___ (Tex. 2011)(5/13/11).

In this case, after receiving a total knee replacement surgery, Ms. Ollie slipped on a wet floor, and injured her right shoulder. She amended her pleadings to only proceed under a general negligence theory, not a medical malpractice theory. the supreme court ruled that her claim was a health care liability claim, and that since she did not file an expert report required by the medical malpractice statute, her case must be dismissed. Further, since the defense had requested fees in the trial court, the supreme court returned the case to the trial court to award "attorney's fees and costs" against her.

"In determining whether a claim [is a medical malpractice case], courts are not bound by the form of the pleading. Rather, the underlying nature of the claim determines whether it is [a health care liability claim]. . . . Thus, it is the underlying nature of Ollie's claim that determines whether the claim is for a departure from accepted standards of safety. . . . And services a hospital provides its patients necessarily include those services required to meet patients' fundamental needs such as cleanliness. . . ." Since the "essence of Ollie's claim centers on the failure of Harris Methodist to act with a proper degree of care to furnish a dry floor, warn her of the hazards of a wet bathroom floor, or some similar failure to act . . . [her action] is a safety claim directly related to services meeting her fundamental needs . . . " and is a health care liability claim requiring an expert report.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Contact Us Today
And Get Your Free Case Review

Logo: Texas Best Lawyers Logo: Texas Super Lawyers - Texas Bar College Logo: Lead Counsel Rated Logo: Houston's Top Lawyers Logo: American Trial Lawyers Association
Logo: Abraham Watkins Best Lawyers in America Logo: American Board of Trial Advocates - Million Dollar Advocates Forum Logo: The Best Lawyers in America

As Seen On:

Logo: CNN Logo: Houston Chronicle Logo: Houston Public Media Logo: ABC 13 Logo: USA Today Logo: KHOU 11 Logo: KPRC 2 Logo: Fox 26 Logo: Telemundo Logo: Univision