A Circuit Court judge in Kentucky has entered summary judgment against a man with regard to his Kentucky medical malpractice lawsuit filed against the University of Kentucky Medical Center that alleged that the plaintiff was falsely told in 2004 that he was HIV positive.
The Kentucky medical malpractice plaintiff alleged that it was not until last year, when he actually saw the HIV test result, that he discovered for the first time that he was not HIV positive. However, the Circuit Court judge determined that the man waited too long to file his Kentucky medical malpractice lawsuit.
Kentucky has a short, one-year statute of limitations in medical malpractice cases: (1) The following actions shall be commenced within one (1) year after the cause of action accrued: … (e) An action against a physician, surgeon, dentist, or hospital licensed pursuant to KRS Chapter 216, for negligence or malpractice; … In respect to the action referred to in paragraph (e) of subsection (1) of this section, the cause of action shall be deemed to accrue at the time the injury is first discovered or in the exercise of reasonable care should have been discovered; provided that such action shall be commenced within five (5) years from the date on which the alleged negligent act or omission is said to have occurred. Kentucky Revised Statutes Title XXXVI Section 413.140.
The Circuit Court judge stated in his written opinion filed in the case: ” … it is clear that the plaintiff knew or should have known about the misdiagnosis before the mandated timeframe. He knew he had been wronged and by whom. Moreover, he had been informed by others that the doctors at UK had misdiagnosed him.” The judge therefore entered summary judgment in favor of the hospital and against the plaintiff.
After summary judgment was entered in its favor because the judge held that the plaintiff had waited too long to file his medical malpractice lawsuit, the defendant issued a statement: “We are pleased that the Court has granted summary judgment to the University’s physicians. While this legal ruling was based on statute of limitations, we feel equally strong that the underlying allegations of misdiagnosis had no merit. The court records includes evidence that [the plaintiff] has had 5 subsequent Western Blot tests that were positive for HIV after the very first Western Blot test was negative.”
One lesson that can be learned from this Kentucky medical malpractice case is that people who suspect that they may have been injured or suffered other harms as a result of medical negligence in Kentucky or in another U.S. state should promptly seek the legal advice of a Kentucky medical malpractice attorney or a medical malpractice attorney in their state who may investigate their medical malpractice claim for them and represent them in a medical malpractice case, if appropriate.
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