Justia Medical Malpractice Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in Civil Litigation
In a medical malpractice action, the issue before the Supreme Court centered on whether the Superior Court erred by denying appellants' motion for judgment as a matter of law, and by excluding certain evidence. Dr. Jennifer Barlow performed a Caesarean section on Laura Cooney-Koss to deliver her baby. There were no apparent complications from the delivery, and Laura was discharged from the hospital three days later. A month later, Laura experienced heavy vaginal bleeding, and she returned to the hospital. In an attempt to slow or stop her bleeding, a hospital physician determined that Laura would need a dilation and evacuation (D&E) procedure. Dr. A. Diane McCracken performed the D&E; further attempts to stop the bleeding were unsuccessful. McCracken decided to perform a hysterectomy, believing that Laura would die otherwise. The doctor removed Laura's uterus, and Laura eventually stopped bleeding. Laura and her husband, Jerome Koss, filed a complaint against McCracken, Barlow, their employer, All About Women of Christiana Care, Inc., and Christiana Care Health Services, Inc., alleging that McCracken negligently failed to undertake an appropriate number of conservative treatment options to stop Laura's bleeding before performing the hysterectomy, which was unnecessary. After trial, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the Kosses. The Superior Court denied McCracken's motions for judgment as a matter of law or for a new trial. Upon review of the Koss' arguments on appeal, the Supreme Court concluded that the trial court correctly determined that appellees' medical expert evidence supported a verdict in their favor. Thus, its denial of the motion for judgment as a matter of law is affirmed. The trial court's evidentiary rulings, however, constituted an abuse of discretion requiring a new trial. View "Cooney-Koss v. Barlow" on Justia Law