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Bradway v. American National Red Cross

United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
992 F.2d 298 (1993)


Facts

Carol Bradway (plaintiff) underwent reconstructive surgery on her face in 1983. After the surgery, Bradway had a blood transfusion. The American National Red Cross (Red Cross) (defendant) supplied the units of blood Bradway received through transfusion. In 1988, Bradway was diagnosed with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). In 1989, Bradway sued the Red Cross for negligently screening and testing the blood provided for Bradway’s surgery in 1983. For medical-malpractice suits, Georgia law imposes a statute of limitations of two years and an ultimate repose of five years. The Red Cross filed a motion to dismiss Bradway’s action, arguing that her claims were time barred by the statute of repose for medical-malpractice suits. Bradway argued that her claims constituted ordinary negligence, rather than medical malpractice, and consequently were not subject to the five-year ultimate repose. The district court granted the Red Cross’s motion to dismiss. Bradway appealed. The court of appeals certified to the Georgia Supreme Court the question of whether a suit alleging negligence in collecting and supplying human blood constituted an action for medical malpractice. The Georgia Supreme Court affirmed that, because the collection and supplying of human blood are medical services involving medical judgment, Bradway’s claims are for medical malpractice and subject to Georgia’s five-year statute of repose.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Tjoflat, C.J.)

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