What areas of medicine do pulmonary medicine expert witnesses consult on? These experts may write reports and testify on standards of care involving chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, mesothelioma, pulmonary embolism, lung cancer, and other conditions. In a complicated medical malpractice case against the treating emergency physician and the emergency physician’s group, parents of Shaquille Johnson sued Price Paul Omondi, M.D., and Southwest Emergency Physicians, P.C., in the death of their son.
Johnson died following treatment by Omondi in the emergency department at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital. The Johnsons and their experts argue that the history taken by Omondi, the physical exam he conducted, and his interpretation of the chest x-ray and EKG were all deviations from the standard of care. Furthermore, the Johnsons contend that Omondi’s failure to properly to rule out a pulmonary embolism and order a chest CT scan constitute medical negligence. The trial court dismissed the case for failing to meet the “gross negligence” standard of proof and the appellate court affirmed the decision.
However, the Georgia Supreme Court reviewed the case, and held that the treating physician’s care may have been grossly negligent and a jury would have to decide the issue. The higher court heard testimony from plaintiff experts Dr. Peter Rosen and Dr. Steven Gabaeff. Both experts stated that the standard of care required the treating physician to obtain a CT scan in order to rule out a pulmonary embolism and that the failure to do so was “grossly improper, egregious, and contrary to well-known and fundamental medical principles.” Emergency Physicians Monthly writes:
Drs. Rosen and Gabaeff testified that the EKG showed “Q3T3” abnormalities and the chest x-ray demonstrated cardiomegaly – which were allegedly both suggestive of a pulmonary embolism.
Pulmonology expert witnesses are critical in lawsuits claiming pulmonary medicine negligence. A medical malpractice determination is devastating to both physicians and medical groups. Following a guilty medical malpractice outcome, a physician’s malpractice coverage can be denied and their medical license rescinded.