Sndgrass v. Eisenhower Medical Center

Full title: SANDRA SNODGRASS, Plaintiff and Appellant, v. EISENHOWER MEDICAL CENTER…

Court: California Court of Appeals, Fourth District, Second Division

Date published: Dec 27, 2007

Fact:

In this medical malpractice case, plaintiff Sandra Snodgrass appeals from the trial court’s judgment following a grant of summary judgment in favor of defendant Eisenhower Medical Center. Plaintiff’s lawsuit was based on defendant’s alleged failure to inform her of the results of her x-ray while providing emergency care treatment of plaintiff’s back condition. In granting defendant’s motion for summary judgment, the trial court found that defendant’s expert evidence showed that defendant’s treatment neither caused nor contributed to plaintiff’s injury and that plaintiff’s expert evidence failed to show that there was a triable issue of material fact on the element of causation. In challenging the trial court’s ruling, plaintiff argues that the defense expert’s opinion was an insufficient basis for granting the motion for summary judgment. Based on the reasoning set forth in Bushling v. Fremont Medical Center (2004) 117 Cal.App.4th 493 (Bushling) we disagree with plaintiff and so affirm the judgment.

Issue: 

The primary issue in this case is whether the trial court erred in granting Eisenhower Medical Center’s motion for summary judgment. Sandra Snodgrass argued that the expert evidence provided by the defense was insufficient to support summary judgment, particularly regarding the element of causation. She contended that the defense expert’s opinion lacked a proper basis and reasoning, and therefore, summary judgment should not have been granted.

Decision: 

The appellate court affirmed the trial court’s judgment in favor of Eisenhower Medical Center. The court held that the defense expert’s opinion, although brief, was sufficient to support summary judgment. Drawing upon precedent (Bushling v. Fremont Medical Center), the court determined that the expert’s opinion, based on his experience and review of medical records, adequately addressed the lack of causation. Therefore, Sandra Snodgrass failed to demonstrate a triable issue of material fact on the element of causation, leading to the affirmation of the trial court’s decision to grant summary judgment in favor of the medical center.

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