Hospital Defense Win on Summary Judgment


Partner, Carmen Y. Cartaya, has achieved Summary Final Judgment on behalf of a hospital on Florida's East Coast.  In the case, the plaintiff alleged that the hospital had failed to effectuate a transfer to another hospital for continued medical care. The plaintiff alleged the loss of a kidney as a result of  delay in care.  The plaintiff’s initial demand to the hospital was $1 million.  Other claims for the alleged vicarious liability of the physicians had been previously dismissed.  The Court accepted the hospital's presentation in the Motion for Summary Final Judgment that a hospital, on its own, does not have the ability to transfer a patient without an order for transfer, authored by the patient's treating physician.  It is the treating physician that needs to initiate the transfer by written order and obtain confirmation from the receiving hospital that the patient has been accepted. The Court rejected the plaintiff’s allegations that the hospital had a duty to transfer because the patient herself asked for a transfer.  The Court found that Summary Final Judgment was proper in favor of the hospital because the patient's treating physicians discharged the patient and never effectuated the transfer of the patient to a receiving hospital.

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