Alabama Physician Removed from Malpractice Case

Alabama Physician Removed from Malpractice CaseDr. Younus Ismail, a physician from Scottsboro, Alabama, was released from his legal predicament as the defendant in a medical malpractice lawsuit in a ruling by the Alabama Supreme Court. The ruling, released on Friday, August 12, overturns a previous judgment passed down by the Jackson County Circuit Court, according to the Huntsville Times.

The news source reports that the suit that Ismail was a defendant for first originated in May of 2008. However, Ismail was not added as a named defendant in the case until July 29, 2010, according to court records. When the suit was originally filed, Highlands Medical Center in Scottsboro and 17 other fictiously named individuals were the original defendants.

The suit that precipitated all of this recent legal action stemmed from an incident that had taken place more than five years earlier, in May of 2006. Randy Paradise filed the lawsuit based on an alleged fall that injured him on May 20, when Paradise was being treated in the Highlands facility's radiology department for an X-ray of his chest.

Although court records made available to the news source identify Ismail as the emergency room physician who had been charged with Paradise's care, he was named as a defendant in the case more than two years after the filing of the original suit. Under the terms of medical malpractice law in Alabama, an action must be filed against a given defendant within two years of an initial claim.

The Alabama Supreme Court, in a unanimous 5-0 ruling, ruled in favor of Ismail, finding as the doctor's lawyers did that Paradise's attorneys did not utilize the time they were afforded by law to name Ismail as a defendant in the lawsuit.

A 2006 study by the New England Journal of Medicine found that 73 percent of malpractice suits filed in response to injuries caused by verifiable medical injury resulted in compensation for their plaintiffs.