In New York or elsewhere, when a medical malpractice case is highly unusual and even shocking to the senses, it may potentially go viral or at least get some national attention. That seems to be the situation developing in one medical malpractice filing in which the plaintiff accuses two doctors and a hospital of negligently cutting off his penis instead of giving him the simple circumcision that he had requested. The doctors have responded with a motion to dismiss, saying that the charges are totally false.
With that countercharge, the chasm between the two positions is substantial. It makes one wonder whether the plaintiff or any plaintiff, could be so incredibly deceitful as to fabricate a set of allegations that are scandalous and file the false charges in a court of law. Alternatively, could it possibly be that the doctors are taking the disingenuous road by trying to cast a smoke screen over the conflict in an attempt to lessen public attention, at least for the time being?
Admitting to mistakenly excising the patient's penis instead of circumcising the foreskin might ruin the doctors' reputations in their locality, or at least put them in the financial doghouse until the dust settles. Therefore, out of desperation they may be wildly denying something whose admission would be professionally devastating. After all, how many would have peace of mind in consulting a doctor who is known primarily for the “penis amputation” spectacle that was nationally reported?
It seems that most people would choose the safe route and select a doctor with more impeccable credentials. It also seems reasonable that the two defendant Alabama doctors can see how devastating it would be to admit these particular medical malpractice charges right now. The answer may be revealed when the court decides whether to grant the motion to dismiss. However, in New York and all other jurisdictions, the general rule is that there must be some legal infirmity on the face of the claim other than whether it is true or false. Matters of truth, falsity, and credibility are generally reserved for the jury to decide.
Source: talkingpointsmemo.com, "Lawyers File Motion to Dismiss Penis Amputation Suit," July 29, 2014
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