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Jackson v. New York University Downtown Hosp.

Other Lower Courts

October 24, 2007

Bridget Jackson and Richard Jackson, Plaintiffs,
v.
New York University Downtown Hospital and Douglas G. Chisolm, Defendants

Editorial Note:

This case is not published in a printed volume and its disposition appears in a table in the reporter.

COUNSEL

Plaintiff's Attorney: Rimland Associates

Defendant's Attorney: Murphy Higgins, Martin, Clearwater Bell

OPINION

Marsha L. Steinhardt, J.

The defendant New York University Hospital moves this Court seeking an order:

a) pursuant to CPLR 3212 granting said defendant summary judgment and dismissing all claims against said defendant with prejudice;

b) directing entry of judgment in favor of said defendant;

c) deleting said defendant from the caption; and d) such other and further relief as to this Court seems just and proper.

The plaintiffs cross-move seeking an order:

a) striking the Answer of the defendant New York University Downtown Hospital for its willful failure in providing any documentary discovery in this action, or in the alternative, compelling the defendant to provide adequate responses to plaintiffs' demands for discovery;

b) permitting the plaintiffs, if the Court does not strike said defendant's Answer, to withdraw their Note of Issue and obtain an extended date by which to file same so that the additional discovery may transpire;

c) such other and further relief as this Court deems just and proper.

Now, upon the foregoing papers and upon hearing oral argument on October 4, 2007 and due deliberation had thereon the motion is in all respects Granted, the Complaint as against the defendant New York University Downtown Hospital is Dismissed and the action is severed accordingly.

Plaintiff claims that NYU Downtown Hospital was negligent in supervising its staff by allegedly advising Mr. Chisolm, a male CRNA to be alone with Ms. Jackson, a female patient, in preparation for the April 24, 2002 surgical procedure. Plaintiffs further allege that the Hospital negligently hired and retained Mr. Chisolm. Plaintiffs also allege that the Hospital is responsible for the actions of its staff, including Mr. Chislom via the theory of respondeat superior. The plaintiffs allege that this ultimately resulted in emotional injuries to Ms. Jackson pursuant to an alleged sexual assault by Mr. Chisolm at the Hospital on April 24, 2002.

On April 29, 1991, Douglas Chisolm, was hired by NYU Downtown Hospital as a nurse anesthetist on a temporary basis, pending his appointment to the Medical Staff. Prior to being offered the position of nurse anesthetist, Mr. Chisolm was interviewed by Dr. Alexander Paspa, Chairman of the anesthesia department at NYU Downtown Hospital.

As part of the hiring process, the Hospital obtained letters of recommendation from Nurse Chisolm's former supervisors at St. John's Episcopal Hospital, Dr. Adel Aziz, Chief of Service, Anesthesia Department, and Thomas Evans, CRNA. The letter of Dr. Aziz dated April 6, 1991 states in pertinent part:

"His approach to patient's care and work in general, was extremely satisfactory...

Mr. Chisolm is conscientious, reliable and hard working."

The letter from Thomas Evans, CRNA dated April 16, 1991 provides in pertinent part:

"Mr. Chisolm is a reliable, pleasant, hard working and well mannered nurse anesthetist."

No incidents of prior misconduct were mentioned by either individual. Mr. Chisolm has never been convicted of any crime nor been professionally disciplined. On his application for employment with NYU Downtown Hospital, Mr. Chisolm denied any ...


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