On June 7, 2013, a Hillsborough County jury found that the defendants, a cardiologist and a cardiology group, were negligent when they failed to timely diagnose and treat coronary artery disease. Bill Landry Jr. passed out several times between April and September of 2004. He had numerous tests done by a neurologist and his PCP to try to determine why he was passing out. These tests were normal. His doctors referred him to the defendant cardiologist and cardiology group several times for a similar work-up to determinine if the reason he was passing out was from a cardiac condition. Without performing any tests, the defendants told him his problem was not cardiac and sent him home. On June 30, 2005, Bill Landry, Jr. was pronounced dead. An autopsy revealed that he died from coronary artery disease.
As in all medical malpractice cases in New Hampshire, this case was heard by a medical malpractice screening panel. The panel unanimously found for the defendants. At trial, the panel findings were entered into evidence, as required by law.
This is the first time in New Hampshire that a plainitff has prevailed at trial with the admission of unanimous unfavorable panel findings.
The jury was instructed that the evidence was not the same at the trial as the evidence before the panel, that the panel hearing is an abbreviated proceeding, that they are not bound by the panel findings and that it is their duty to decide the case based on all the evidence presented at trial.
The jury’s verdict proves that unanimous unfavorable panel findings against the plaintiff does not mean that the case is without merit.
The case was tried by Attorney Joseph McDowell and Attorney Heather Menezes.