Court of Appeals Rules Radiology Technologist Qualified to be Expert Witness
After deciding that a radiology technologist (RT) is qualified to give an opinion in a medical malpractice case, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed summary judgment for St. Mary’s Medical Center of Evansville Inc. on Oct. 29, 2019.
Nataomi and Frank Riley sued the hospital alleging malpractice with allegations that RT Karen Osborne negligently put contrast dye in Nataomi’s arm while preparing for a CT scan. The Rileys hired expert witness Barry Southers, who said that Osborne failed to stop injecting the dye in Nataomi’s arm after she said she was experiencing pain. Southers alleged Osborne did not comply with the standard of care, which led to Nataomi’s injuries. The hospital argued that Southers wasn’t a proper expert, but the appeals court disagreed.
The appeals court noted that it wasn’t Southers’ responsibility to determine the exact amount of contact that was needed to cause Nataomi any injury; instead, Southers only had to determine if Osborne’s alleged breach of standard of care is what actually caused the injuries Nataomi experienced.
“The causation issue here was not complex, and therefore we conclude that Southers was qualified to render an expert opinion and thus establish a genuine issue of material fact on issue," Judge Terry A. Crone wrote. "Consequently, we reverse the trial court’s grant of summary judgment for the hospital and remand for further proceedings.”