Testimony from an emergency medicine expert witness is commonly needed in medical malpractice cases. Medical negligence litigation often involves allegations of missed or delayed diagnoses of life-threatening conditions.
In a York, UK, case, emergency medicine expert witness Peter Burdett-Smith testified regarding the death of Toni Speck. Ms. Speck was detained at the Fulford Road police station and died from serotonin syndrome resulting in cardiac arrest. The inquest jury ruled that the nurse who visited Ms. Speck’s cell should have realized Ms. Speck needed urgent treatment. Expert Burdett-Smith opined that Ms. Speck’s life could have been saved if she had been transported directly to the emergency department at York District Hospital.
Ms. Speck was also examined by North Yorkshire Police doctor Abdalin Sheik Mohomed but according to “CCTV footage, his examination consisted of seven seconds observation with the hatch open” while he testified he spent five to 10 minutes with the patient. The jury agreed that “the actions or omissions of the detaining police officers, the custody sergeant and the custody nurse… more than minimally, negligibly or trivially contributed” to Ms Speck’s death.