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Estate of Emmett Weatherspoon v Client

Area of Law:
Medical Malpractice Defense 

Michigan Court of Appeals

Overturned an erroneous decision by the lower court

The common-law standard of care applies to malpractice actions against nurses. Therefore, the applicable standard of care is the skill and care ordinarily possessed and exercised by practitioners of the profession in the same or similar localities. The trial court’s analysis focused on whether the medical care Weatherspoon received was premised on an illegal standard of care, and as such, constituted cruel and unusual punishment. But the case was not based on an allegation of an Eighth Amendment violation. It is based on a claim of medical negligence. The Court of Appeals pointed out the differences between healthcare standards of care in a traditional setting and in a correctional setting, noting that there are extra concerns in the correctional setting. The Court of Appeals overturned the lower court’s order for a new trial and the jury verdict of No Cause was reinstated.

Ronald Chapman

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