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Maldonado v. Sinai Medical Group

January 16, 2008

ERNESTO MALDONADO, PLAINTIFF,
v.
SINAI MEDICAL GROUP, INC., MT. SINAI HOSPITAL MEDICAL CENTER OF CHICAGO; SINAI HEALTH SYSTEM, INC.; THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA; ALVARO REYES, M.D., INDIVIDUALLY AND AS EMPLOYEE AND/OR AGENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND/OR THE ACTUAL AND/OR APPARENT AGENT OF SINAI MEDICAL GROUP, INC., MT. SINAI HOSPITAL MEDICAL CENTER OF CHICAGO AND SINAI HEALTH SYSTEM, INC.; NANCY GLICK, M.D., INDIVIDUALLY AND AS EMPLOYEE AND/OR ACTUAL AND/OR APPARENT AGENT OF SINAI MEDICAL GROUP, INC., MT. SINAI HOSPITAL MEDICAL CENTER OF CHICAGO, AND SINAI HEALTH SYSTEM, INC.; KENNETH U. EKECHUKWU, M.D., INDIVIDUALLY AND AS EMPLOYEE AND/OR ACTUAL AND/OR APPARENT AGENT OF SINAI MEDICAL GROUP, INC., MT. SINAI HOSPITAL MEDICAL CENTER OF CHICAGO, AND SINAI HEALTH SYSTEM, INC.; AND LISA RUSSELL, M.D. INDIVIDUALLY AND AS EMPLOYEE AND/OR ACTUAL AND/OR APPARENT AGENT OF SINAI MEDICAL GROUP, INC., MT. SINAI HOSPITAL MEDICAL CENTER OF CHICAGO, AND SINAI HEALTH SYSTEM, INC., DEFENDANTS.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Rebecca R. Pallmeyer

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

On February 14, 2007, Plaintiff Ernesto Maldonado ("Maldonado") filed a Second Amended Complaint against Defendants Sinai Medical Group ("SMG"); Mt. Sinai Hospital Medical Center of Chicago ("Hospital"); Sinai Health System, Inc. ("SHS"); the United States of America; Alvaro Reyes, M.D.; Nancy Glick, M.D.; and Kenneth U. Ekechukwu, M.D. Maldonado alleges that the physician defendants negligently failed to diagnose osteomyelitis of his spine (an infection of the bone)*fn1 while he was hospitalized at Mt. Sinai in late July 2004, and that he developed paraplegic paralysis as a result. Count I alleges that Dr. Reyes, Dr. Glick, Dr. Ekechukwu, and various unnamed interns, residents, nurses, and technicians provided negligent medical care to Maldonado, and that Defendants SMG, SHS, and Mt. Sinai Hospital were vicariously liable for that individual malpractice, as well as institutionally negligent in overseeing Maldonado's care. In Count II, Plaintiff alleges that the United States is vicariously liable for Dr. Reyes's alleged medical malpractice because Dr. Reyes was its employee and agent.

The Hospital and SHS now move to dismiss Maldonado's Second Amended Complaint in its entirety for failure to comply with 735 ILCS 5/2-622. That statute requires a plaintiff who pleads a cause of action for healing art malpractice to attach to his complaint a medical report that certifies that there is a meritorious basis for the claim. In the alternative, Defendants move to strike: "(1) allegations of negligence by nurses and technicians; (2) allegations of institutional negligence against [Defendants]; (3) allegations as to Dr. Glick; (4) allegations as to Dr. Ekechukwu; (5) allegations as to negligence by unidentified residents and interns," because those individual claims are not supported by a medical report as required by section 2-622. For the reasons stated below, the court considers this motion as addressed to Maldonado's subsequently-filed Third Amended Complaint, grants the in part, and denies it in part.

FACTUAL BACKGROUND

The following alleged facts are drawn from the Third Amended Complaint and from the medical reports attached to the Second and Third Amended Complaints. The facts are set forth in the light most favorable to Maldonado.

Maldonado was admitted to the Hospital complaining of severe abdominal pain and lower chest pain on June 17, 2004, but was later discharged from the hospital. (3d Am. Compl. [73] ¶ 5.) On July 19, 2004, Maldonado was readmitted to the Hospital for abdominal pain, back pain, and chest pain. (Id. ¶ 6.) Maldonado asserts that during the period from July 24, 2004 through July 27, 2004 he was treated by Dr. Russell, Dr. Reyes, Dr. Glick, Dr. Ekechukwu,*fn2 and various unnamed interns, residents, nurses, and technicians. (Id. ¶ 8.) Maldonado alleges that each of these health care providers and Defendants SMG, SHS, and the hospital were negligent "in one or more of the following respects":

a. [They] [f]ailed to address Ernesto Maldonado's repeated complaints of lower chest and abdominal pain;

b. Failed to consider differential diagnoses for Ernesto Maldonado's lower chest and abdominal pain;

c. Failed to properly treat the staphylococcal bacteremia discovered on July 20, 2004;

d. Failed to address Ernesto Maldonado's complaints of back pain;

e. Failed to recognize that the findings in the CT scan of July 24, 2004 required immediate follow up;

f. After receiving the results of the July 24, 2004 CT scan, failed to obtain an MRI or Bone Scan;

g. Failed to obtain an orthopedic consult;

h. Failed to diagnose osteomyelitis of his thoracic vertebrae; [and/or]

I. Failed to treat the osteomyelitis of his thoracic vertebrae. (Id. ¶ 8.) As a result of these allegedly negligent acts, Maldonado asserts that he suffered a spinal epidural abscess, osteomyelitis and parasthesia. (Id. ¶ 9.) Maldonado claims that multiple back surgeries were required to treat these conditions. (Id.) Even after having received treatment, Maldonado alleges, he has become paraplegic and will be permanently disabled. (Id. ¶ 10.) Because of his condition, Maldonado asserts that he will continue to experience pain and suffering for the rest of his life and ...


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