Schlachman, Belsky & Weiner, P.A. Menu Menu Menu Contact

Man receives $28.5 million verdict for doctor's improper care

When Baltimore residents place their trust in the hands of a doctor, they expect that the doctor will act with the care required under the circumstances. Indeed, doctors have a duty to act with reasonable care, although it may be unclear to some patients what exactly that means.

In a medical malpractice case, an injured patient must prove the doctor violated the standard of care. The first step in this showing is that the doctor actually owed the patient a duty of care. For example, a doctor at a restaurant has no duty to come help a person suffering a heart attack. On the other hand, if the doctor is treating the person as a patient, the doctor owes that patient a duty of care.

Accordingly, the doctor typically must have a doctor-patient relationship in order to owe a duty of care. This is an important distinction, as it does not depend on the procedure itself, but the relationship between the doctor and patient.

For example, one man recently was awarded $28.5 million in a medical malpractice action based on significant personal injury he suffered as a result of doctor error. The man had undergone a controversial procedure that he did not need to undergo, during which his doctor failed to monitor warning signs. As a result, the man suffered a loss of oxygen in his brain, cardiac arrest and permanent brain injury.

The doctor's duty of care was at issue in the case, as the jury found the doctor had violated the standard of care by clear and convincing evidence. This is an even higher evidentiary standard than the typical preponderance of the evidence standard, and demonstrates the egregiousness of the doctor's conduct and the degree of violation of care in the case.

Source: South Florida Times, "Jury hits 2 doctors with $38.5m in medical negligence verdict," Mohamed Hamaludin, May 23, 2013

300 East Lombard Street
Suite 1100
Baltimore, MD 21202-3245

Toll Free: 877-736-1845
Phone: 410-497-8433
Fax: 410-783-4771
Baltimore Law Office Map

2905-A Old Largo Road
P.O. Box 1658
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772

Toll Free: 877-736-1845
Phone: 410-497-8433
Fax: 301-627-5911
Get Directions

100 East Main Street, Suite 102
Salisbury, MD 21801

Phone: 410-543-5398
Fax: 410-783-4771
Get Directions

21 East Church Street
Frederick, MD 21701

Phone: 301-662-1043
Fax: 410-783-4771
Get Directions