Learnscape Case Study: Hospital Nightmare

Learnscape Case Study: Hospital Nightmare
Learnscape Case Study: Hospital Nightmare

Learnscape Case Study: Hospital Nightmare

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Learnscape Case Study: Hospital Nightmare

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Learnscape Case Study: Hospital Nightmare

A successful claim of negligence must establish the existence of duty of care, breach of duty, verification of injury and causation. A duty of care arises from a legal obligation of care, observance or performance imposed on a party to safeguard the rights of another. The hospital and its employees owed a duty of care to Mrs. Smith on ground that she sought the hospital’s medical services and was attended to by the hospital’s employees. The hospital breached its duty by not making sure that Mrs. Smith could not contract a staph infection or that she got attended to immediately she got the infection. As a result of complications of the infection, Mrs. Smith contracted an autoimmune disease. The staph infection was caused by the negligence of Dr. Patrow, the hospital’s employee, who failed to take reasonable steps to ensure that the infection could not spread through contact such as changing gloves between each patient and washing clothes out of the room.

The doctrine of Respondeat Superior applies in this case. The hospital is liable for the wrongful acts of its employees due to the fact that it failed to ensure that there were adequate rules and procedures, that the rooms contained adequate gloves for every patient, that the physicians washed their hands out of the room, and that the staff members were properly trained on dealing with infections. Thus, the hospital is vicariously liable for the injury caused to Mrs. Smith by the negligence of its employees. Mrs. Smith is entitled to indemnification by the hospital for the injury. Mrs. Smith should be indemnified the costs incurred for treating the autoimmune disease.


Learnscape. (2012). Hospital Nightmare. Jones & Bartlett Learning.

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