Judge gives plaintiff 30 days to amend expert reports in Christus med mal

David Yates Sep. 22, 2010, 11:00am

A Christus Hospital St. Elizabeth patient who fell and aggravated a leg injury on the way to the bathroom has 30 days to amend his medical expert reports or face having the case dismissed.

Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court, made the ruling following a Sept. 20 hearing on Christus' motion to dismiss plaintiff Jessy Green's medical malpractice lawsuit.

Christus filed the motion earlier this month, objecting to the expert reports of nurse Sandra Brannan and neurologist Dr. Erwin Lo.

Under Chapter 74 of Texas Civil Code, plaintiffs are required to submit an expert report when filing a med-mal claim.

Court papers show that on Feb. 8, 2008, Green was admitted to Christus St. Elizabeth for a left total knee arthroplasty.

The morning after the knee surgery, Green used his call button for assistance to go to the bathroom. He claims no one came and he had to lay in bed until a woman came by to pick up his breakfast tray.

"When Green told her what was occurring and that he needed to go to the bathroom, she decided to assist him," the suit states. "Unfortunately, on the way to the bathroom both she and Green fell, which disrupted the surgical wound and necessitated a second procedure."

In its motion to dismiss, Christus claims nurse Brannan "is not a physician and is therefore barred by statute from giving opinions as to causation," and that Dr. Lo's report fails to show that he is familiar with nursing standards and procedures.

Green is suing for past and future medical expenses, impairment and mental anguish.

He is represented by Houston attorney Craig Lewis.

Christus is represented by Houston attorney Erin Lunceford of the Sprott, Rigby, Newsom, Robbins & Lunceford law firm.

Case No. D186-646

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