(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this elder abuse case and its proceedings.)
It is also worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical negligence case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, U.C. Davis Medical Center, Mercy, Sutter, or any skilled nursing facility.
Ratification may be express or implied based on the conduct of the principal from which an intention to consent to or adopt the act may be fairly inferred. Rakestraw v. Rodrigues (1972) 8 Cal.3d 67, 73. The word, ratify means to approve and sanction; to make valid; to confirm; to give sanction to; to authorize or otherwise approve conduct retroactively, either expressly or by implication. Black’s Law Dictionary (6th ed. 1990) p. 1262, col. 1].For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
Ratification … may be established by any circumstantial or direct evidence demonstrating adoption or approval of the employee’s actions by the corporate agent. Such ratification may be inferred from the fact that the employer, after being informed of the employee’s actions, does not fully investigate and fails to repudiate the employee’s conduct by. redressing the harm done and punishing or discharging the employee. (Fisher v. San Pedro Peninsula Hospital (1989) 214 Cal.App.3d 590, 621.) Failure to repudiate a party’s acts is itself evidence of ratification. Streetscenes v. ITC Entertainment Group, Inc. (2002) 103 Cal.App.4th 233.
The inferences which may be drawn from all of these facts is that Defendant’s managing agents – the supervising nurses, the supervisor of defendant’s social services department, and Defendant’s administrator, knew of the staff’s violation of Mr. White’s Patient Care Plan, physician’s orders, and policies and procedures, and by dismissing the complaints and refusing to investigate, attempted to hide or deny these facts.
The administrator’s refusal, along with the numerous other supervisors, to investigate the violation of the patient’s orders not to be fed solid food, and proper procedures for repositioning Mr. White, is itself evidence of ratification.
Defendant failed to terminate, discipline or reprimand the employees that violated Mr. White’s Patient Care Plan, gave him solid food, or failed to reposition him. Evidence that a negligent or reckless employee was not reprimanded is evidence of the principal’s approval. Hartman v. Shell Oil Co., (1977) 68 Cal.App.3d 240, 251; Coats v. Construction & Gen. Laborers Local No. 185, (1971) 15 Cal.App.3d 908, 915, and cases cited. (See Part 7 of 10.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.