Claim Alleging Medical Assistant Failed to Prevent Patient Fall Off Examination Table Sounds in Ordinary Negligence

A medical assistant’s failure to take steps to prevent a patient from falling off an examination table while administering an injection alleged a claim for ordinary negligence, rather than medical malpractice. Therefore, the patient’s subsequent claim was not subject to Georgia’s pre-suit requirement that an expert affidavit must be filed with the original complaint.


While being administered the vaccination, the plaintiff began to feel faint and fell off the table and was injured. The medical assistant administering the injection allegedly did nothing to prevent the plaintiff from falling. The court found that because the complaint did not allege negligence in the administration of the vaccination, and a jury would be capable of determining the claim without the help of expert evidence, the claim sounded in ordinary negligence rather than malpractice.  Kerr v. OB/GYN Associates of Savannah, 2012 WL 386630 (Ga.App. Feb 08, 2012)  (not designated for publication). 


But see Stubbs v. Surgi-Staff, Inc., 2012 WL 126140 (Fla.App. 4 Dist. Jan 18, 2012) (not designated for publication) (injuries from nurse’s negligent transfer of patient to gurney arose during the provision of medical care and services, so patient’s subsequent claim sounded in medical malpractice).