Ricciardi v. Children’s Hospital Medical Center
United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
811 F.2d 18 (1987)
Peter Ricciardi (plaintiff) underwent heart surgery at Children’s Hospital Medical Center (the hospital) (defendant). After the surgery, Ricciardi suffered from neurological issues. Ricciardi sued the hospital for medical malpractice. Ricciardi’s case theory was that an aortic cannula came out during surgery due to the hospital’s negligence, causing an air bubble to get into his blood. Ricciardi’s only evidence to support this case theory was a note handwritten on his medical chart by Dr. Krishna Nirmel. The note stated, “during surg. episode of aortic cannula accidently out x 40-60 secs.” Nirmel did not have personal knowledge of the event that led to the note but wrote the note after speaking with someone who participated in the surgery. Nirmal could not remember who this person was. At trial, Ricciardi attempted to introduce the note under the business-records exception to the hearsay rule. The trial court sustained the hospital’s objection to the evidence. The trial court then directed a verdict in the hospital’s favor. Ricciardi appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Bownes, J.)
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