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  • Malpractice question

    Posted by michael.driscoll_703 on January 8, 2021 at 12:41 pm

    Hi everyone.

    I have gotten a notice that the lawyers of the hospital I used to work for want to subpoena me for a case. Apparently this is a x patient vs z hospital case.

    What does this mean for me? The hospital/defense lawyers have contacted me. I have received no communication from the patient/plaintiff.

    Unknown Member replied 3 years, 6 months ago 6 Members · 12 Replies
  • 12 Replies
  • alvarezgga1

    Member
    January 8, 2021 at 12:58 pm

    call your malpractice company and let em know

    • ruszja

      Member
      January 8, 2021 at 1:16 pm

      Quote from tx_longhorn

      call your malpractice company and let em know

       
      There is your answer.
       
      Then do what they tell you.
       
      And nothing else.
       
      Right now, this is ‘x vs hospital’, it can turn into ‘x and hospital vs you’ in a heartbeat.

      • Unknown Member

        Deleted User
        January 8, 2021 at 3:57 pm

        This is potentially a vicarious liability scenario; more of an issue into the future. 
        Advice, as above.
        I bet it will be fine.
        But still, watch your back.

        • Unknown Member

          Deleted User
          January 10, 2021 at 11:21 pm

          BTW – you can charge the attorneys that are going to depose you.  Charge them $500/hr payable at the deposition.

  • aldoctc

    Member
    January 11, 2021 at 12:29 pm

    As other’s have mentioned, contact your malpractice carrier.  They’ll likely assign a lawyer even though you haven’t been named in the suit.  
     
    Yet.  
     
    The following is not meant to be construed as legal advice and is merely a recitation of my experiences in this regard.  
     
    My experiences in this area is that I was being asked to attest to and comment on an imaging study I’d read on a patient that had brought a malpractice action against another physician.  
     
    It served me well to remember that I was being asked about an imaging study I’d read AND TO RESTRICT MY COMMENTS TO THAT IMAGING STUDY ONLY.  When I was asked to offer interpretations and/or comments about other imaging studies, I politely declined stating that I’d only prepared to discuss my study, had not been hired as an expert witness, and would not offer an opinion on any other study.  
     
    It also served me well to remember my area of expertise is radiology and not, for example, general surgery.  So when I was asked as to whether a particular patient’s care was inadequate, deficient, etc. my response was that medical-surgical management of patients was outside of my area of practice.  
     

    • michael.driscoll_703

      Member
      January 11, 2021 at 2:47 pm

      Thank you very much for this useful response. Ive contacted my malpractice carrier and am waiting to be set up with lawyer.

      Im still confused about what this means for me? I havent been contacted by the plaintiff at all. So does that mean that Im not being sued? My understanding is that if I am being sued, then I would be given an official notice from the plaintiff.

      • Unknown Member

        Deleted User
        January 11, 2021 at 3:35 pm

        your lawyer that was assigned will explain everything in detail. Since you are not being sued, the hospital’s defense lawyers and your insurance-assigned lawyer will go over any allegations from the plaintiff.  You no doubt are in the clear but certainly want to be protected.
         

        • Unknown Member

          Deleted User
          January 11, 2021 at 5:59 pm

          Contacting your malpractice company seems crucial.

          At the same time, is it possible to decline/ignore the hospital/defense request? If there is an option of staying away completely, isnt that the best path?

          • ruszja

            Member
            January 11, 2021 at 7:56 pm

            Quote from dr77767

            At the same time, is it possible to decline/ignore the hospital/defense request? If there is an option of staying away completely, isnt that the best path?

             
            The subpoena is issued by the court, complying with it is not optional.

            • Unknown Member

              Deleted User
              January 11, 2021 at 8:29 pm

              If there is a subpoena, but there has not.
              You can deny a request, but they may threaten to issue a subpoena.
               

              • Unknown Member

                Deleted User
                January 12, 2021 at 4:49 pm

                Quit worrying. Listen to your defense lawyer.

      • ruszja

        Member
        January 11, 2021 at 7:54 pm

        Quote from AnneShirley

        Im still confused about what this means for me? I havent been contacted by the plaintiff at all. So does that mean that Im not being sued? My understanding is that if I am being sued, then I would be given an official notice from the plaintiff.

        It means that once you insurer has assigned one of their contracted attorneys, everything will go through him/her. If anyone contacts you, you tell the attorney and do whatever he/she tells you to do.
        At some point, you get the subpoena in the mail. If your attorney advises you to acknowledge ‘service’, do so (if he tells you to give them the run-around and insist on personal service, do that). This may just be a ‘subpoena duces tecum’ for your report, but it could also be that they want to depose you. Typically, your lawyer will talk the hospitals lawyer out of doing so as you will limit your testimony to the content of your report, and they can read that report without paying you $1000 to show up. Even though the hospital is who subpoenas you, there will typically be lawyers from both sides of the case in addition to your own lawyer +/- a recorder. If this is about a case you read, you stick to what you said in the report. If this is about a patient management issue, you stick to the medical record. Beyond that its  ‘I have no recollection of any details regarding this patient.’
         
        Btw. ‘Pat x’ vs. Hospital may not involve you at all. It could be that patient was dropped out of a bed from ‘orthopedic height’ and you just read the plain film with the intertrochanteric fracture. You are a witness to the fact that the bone was broken.