Justia Health Law Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in Louisiana Supreme Court
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The Supreme Court granted certiorari in this matter to determine whether a retiree of the City of Slidell, plaintiff Dean Born, could continue participating in the City of Slidell's health insurance plan following the City's adoption of Ordinance No. 3493, which required each city retiree to apply for Medicare coverage upon reaching the age of sixty-five. After review, the Supreme Court affirmed the Court of Appeal's finding that the City could not terminate plaintiff's desired plan coverage and require him to accept Medicare coverage, because plaintiff retired before the effective date of the Ordinance. View "Born v. City of Slidell" on Justia Law

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Dr. Tommie Granger was a certified cardiac surgeon who had hospital privileges at defendant Christus St. Frances Cabrini Hospital. One of his patients was hospitalized at Cabrini and developed complications. While the doctor was called to the hospital to check on the patient, he and Cabrini staff got into a heated exchange of words within earshot of the patient. The doctor performed an in-room procedure and left. En route, the patient developed further complications, but the doctor was unable to go back to Cabrini to help. He called a colleague to perform the necessary surgery on the patient Cabrini's Board of Directors suspended Granger pending a review of the doctor's conduct regarding that patient. Finding that unprofessional behavior was a contributing factor that adversely affected the patient's care, the Board recommended that the doctor be placed on probation and to self-refer for anger management. When he did not comply, the Board revoked his privileges. The doctor sued, and ultimately won nearly $3 million in damages with respect to Cabrini's peer review proceedings. Upon review, the Supreme Court found that an award of lost income that was included in those damages was given in error, and was vacated. View "Granger v. Christus Health Central Louisiana" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court granted consolidated writ applications to address the majority opinion of the court of appeal which held the medical malpractice cap enunciated in La.R.S. 40:1299.42(B) was unconstitutional "to the extent it includes nurse practitioners within its ambit.” The Court reiterated its holding in "Butler v. Flint Goodrich Hospital of Dillard University," (508 U.S. 909 (1993)), which found the cap constitutional. Finding the cap to be applicable to all qualified healthcare providers under the Medical Malpractice Act, including nurse practitioners, the Louisiana Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the court of appeal in this respect. Additionally, the Court addressed two other assignments of error asserted by the Louisiana Patients' Compensation Fund and affirmed those portions of the court of appeal judgment. The effect of the Court's holding was to reinstate the trial court judgment in full. View "Oliver v. Magnolia Clinic" on Justia Law