GA: Dr. known to be alcoholic botched surgery: did hospital have duty to disclose addiction?
COURT'S OPINION: The Court of Appeals of Georgia reversed the judgment of the lower court, holding, inter alia, that pretermitting whether a hospital has a duty to inform a patient, who is being treated at the hospital, that the patient's physician is currently abusing alcohol or drugs. The court found that there was no evidence in the case that at the time of the surgery, the hospital knew, or had any reason to suspect, that Dr. Williams had relapsed and had been using alcohol. Consequently, the court concluded that the trial court had erred in denying the defendants' motion for summary judgment on the failure-to-inform claim. The court found that although it was undisputed that Dr. Williams was an alcoholic and had consumed significant amounts of alcohol prior to his treatment for alcoholism, as well as during a period when he relapsed, there was no evidence that he was under the influence of alcohol when he performed the surgery on Gloria. The court noted that Dr. Williams testified at a deposition that he never consumed alcohol within 24 hours of any surgery. Accordingly, the court determined that whether or not Dr. Williams had been under the influence of alcohol when he erred in performing surgery on Gloria, and whether the hospital had a duty to inform her of the fact that he was an alcoholic were matters which should have resulted in the granting of the defendants' motion for summary judgment. Williams v. Booker, Al 1A0634 - 5 (6/21/2011)-G A
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Title Annotation:||Hospital Law Decisions of Note|
|Publication:||Hospital Law's Regan Report|
|Date:||Jul 1, 2011|
|Previous Article:||Hospital Pt. fell from x-ray table: expert not required: case on point: Thompson v. Ashland Hospital corp., 210-CA-000801MR (7/8/2011)-KY.|
|Next Article:||Meet the Editor & Publisher: A. David Tammelleo, JD.|