Climate Change Project

Table of Contents



Louisiana Medical Malpractice

Guide to Graham v. Willis-Knighton Medical Center, 699 So.2d 365 (La. 1997)

What was the patient's initial injury?

Was the repair of that injury done correctly?

What was the alleged negligence?

Is there a possible EMTALA issue?

What was the result of the negligence?

Is it certain that the injury came from the negligence?

Who paid on behalf of the surgeon?

How much was paid?

What presumption does this create?

What is the PCF's responsibility at this point?

What does the PCF want to contest?

What issue was tried to the district court?

What verdict did the judge render?

What did the judge find that the plaintiff failed to prove?

What was the fund ordered to pay?

What did the appeals court do?

How did they value the lost chance?

How did the court characterize effect of the insurer paying the $100,000 limit?

What if the insurer pays on behalf of one of multiple defendants, and the others are dismissed without payment?

Can the fund contest liability for the dismissed defendants?

There were a series of problems in the Jones case, beginning with an admitted negligent action.  Plaintiff died from a later complication of a subsequent procedure.  Does the admission of liability extend to these consequential damages?

The Pendleton case created two categories - primary and secondary harm.  What do these mean and why is this hard to determine?

Dr. Smith did the unsuccessful revascularization on plaintiff.  What does this tell you about the condition of the leg when plaintiff arrived at her hospital?

How much time would have been saved if defendant had called the vascular surgeon at once, and the procedure had been done right at the end of the primary repair?

What did the court find about the odds of saving a leg by revascularization within 4 - 6 hours in a healthy young person?

Was plaintiff a healthy, young person?

Dr. Hiller testified that it was more probable than not that plaintiff's leg would have been lost. 

Why was he asked that question?

What did the trial judge do with this answer?

When is the Pendleton determination made?

What problems does this pose for evaluating the evidence?

What if underlying causation is at issue, not just the lost chance analysis?

How does the  court refocus the analysis in cases against the fund?

What does the plaintiff have to prove at trial in a case against the fund?

How does the court value a lost chance?

What is the significance of the lost chance being 50% or greater?

What if it is less than 50%?

Does this distinction make sense?

What did the SC decide was the chance of saving plaintiff's leg?

How much did the SC reduce the trial court award?


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