Medical Malpractice case reinstated because of conflict between doctor's chart and testimony
Orthopaedic surgeon Patrick Morse dictated an Operative Report in which he claimed to have used vice grips and an extracting device to remove a bone screw that had stripped. He was sued for malpractice, and the minor plaintiff's orthopaedic expert claimed that the Operative Report described a violation of the standard of care. In his testimony at deposition, the Defendant claimed that his Operative Report was inaccurate, and that he actually removed the screw with a procedure slightly different than he had described. The Defendant asked the trial court to dismiss the malpractice claim, arguing that the Plaintiff's expert testimony "was not grounded in fact" because it relied upon the medical chart and not the doctor's "revision" of the chart. The appellate court dismissed the Doctor's claim, holding that there was evidence to support the Plaintiff's expert's interpretation, and it was for the jury to decide which account of the surgery to accept. The trial judge in Ogemaw County had inapprorpriately decided a credibility issue by choosing to accept the doctor's testimony where it conflicted with his Operative Report. The case is Barrick v. Morse and WB Orthopedics Staffing.