(Please note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this personal injury case and its proceedings.)
It is also worth noting that situations similar to those described in this medical malpractice 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.
The standard of care in a medical malpractice case requires that medical service providers exercise that reasonable degree of skill, knowledge and care ordinarily possessed and exercised by members of their profession under similar circumstances. The standard of care against which the acts of a medical practitioner are to be measured is a matter peculiarly within the knowledge of experts; it presents the basic issue in a malpractice action and can only be proved by their testimony, unless the conduct required by the particular circumstances is within the common knowledge of laymen. (Willard v. Hagemeister (1981) 121 Cal.App.3d 406, 412, 175 Cal.Rptr. 365.)
It is also established that a nurse’s conduct must not be measured by the standard of care required of a physician or surgeon, but by that of other nurses in the same or similar locality and under similar circumstances. (See Fein v. Permanente Medical Group (1985) 38 CalJd 137, 150-151, 211 Cal.Rptr. 368, 695 P.2d 665; Fraijo v. Hartland Hospital (1979) 99 Cal.App.3d 331, 341, 160 Cal.Rptr. 246.) Alef v. Alta Bates Hospital (1992) 5 Cal.App.4th 208, 215. For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
A medical expert is not qualified as a witness unless it is shown that he is familiar with the standards required of physicians under similar circumstances. Sinz v. Owens, 33 Cal.2d 749, 753, 205 P.2d 3, 8 A.L.R.2d 757; Moore v. Belt, 34 Cal.2d 525, 532, 212 P.2d 509.
It is for the trial court to determine, in the exercise of a sound discretion, the competency and qualification of an expert witness to give his opinion in evidence (Mirich v. Balsinger, 53 Cal.App.2d 103, 114, 127 P.2d 639), and its ruling will not be disturbed upon appeal unless a manifest abuse of that discretion is shown. 2 Wigmore on Evidence [3d ed.], § 561, p. 641; Sowden v. Idaho Quartz M. Co., 55 Cal. 443, 451; Sinz v. Owens, supra, 33 Cal.2d 749, 755-756, 205 P.2d 3. The competency of an expert is in every case a relative one, I. e. relative to the topic about which the person is asked to make his statement. 2 Wigmore on Evidence, 3d Ed., § 555, p. 634. (See Part 9 of 9.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.