It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this wrongful death case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy, Sutter, or any skilled nursing facility.
(Please also 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.)
Dr. Lee Should Be Precluded From Rendering The Opinion That Ms. Hill Did Not Develop Her Pressure Sore At XYZ Healthcare
During the earlier part of his deposition, Dr. Lee offered opinions that were at best vague and contradictory whether he could or would render an opinion regarding whether Ms. Hill did or did not develop her pressure sore at XYZ Healthcare. For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
For example, after being impeached with the woeful inaccuracies in his deposition in which he stated that Ms. Hill had been in transit for 30 hours instead of 6 or 7 hours (actually it was 5.5 hours), Dr. Lee testified:
A: Well, yes. Instead of the 30 it’s a small number, 6 or 7 hours. Could decub occur in 6 or 7 hours? Yes. Could the decub be caused from pressure? Yes. Could it be from urine? Yes. Could it be from lack of turns? Yes. But I’m not gonna testify to what actually caused the decub.
(Lee Depo. at 68:19-25.)
Shortly thereafter, however, Dr. Lee testified:
Q: Will you be testifying that to a reasonable degree of medical certainty Ms Hill did not develop the pressure sore that was documented upon her admission to Kaiser at XYZ Healthcare?
(Lee Depo. at 69:11-15.)
Following the above testimony, plaintiffs’ counsel cross-examined Dr. Lee on the stated bases for his opinion. Dr. Lee acknowledged widespread failures by XYZ Healthcare personnel to reposition Ms. Hill and check her skin. After these concessions, he was again asked to state what his ultimate opinions would be regarding the pressure sore. The question and his response have been played in this trial and are repeated here:
Q: Let me make sure I understand — and why don’t you just summarize for me, what opinions are you going to be offering with respect to the pressure sore issue?
A: Well, I’m gonna agree with you that the records don’t show specifically the Q2 turnings. I’m gonna agree with you that it’s not consistent, and sadly that’ not unusual in skilled nursing. But I’m also gonna say that Exhibit 65 shows a significant decub that’s probably a stage three. And the fact that if we go with your direction and assume that no one’s doing anything while she’s here after her fall, she really should have had the stage three way earlier. It should have happened in the nursing home. Now, whether she had – because of the inconsistency of turning based on the chart review led to some skin — and again, it’s — because it’s out of focus I can’t tell whether it’s a stage one or a blister of some sort. The worst case scenario would be going to a one or two for you at XYZ Healthcare. And that’s – that’s basically it.
Q: So if I can summarize your testimony, you are going to agree with us that the record does not show consistent repositioning or skin inspection; correct?
Q: You’re going to agree with us that there is no evidence outside of the medical record to support consistent repositioning or skin inspection of Ms. Hill; correct?
Q: You are going to agree with us that the photograph that is dated September 15th shows a stage three pressure sore; correct?
Q: And your further opinion is going to be that the wound that Ms. Hill would have had in that area as of the time she left XYZ Healthcare would be at most a stage one or a stage two; is that right
(Lee Depo. at 99:12-101:1.) (See Part 4 of 4.)
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.