Solution Sought for Expert Witness Problem in NC

A broad coalition representing ninety-seven percent (97%) of the physicians in North Carolina and approximately 65% of physicians nationwide has filed a motion with the North Carolina Supreme Court seeking permission to file an amicus curiae brief in the appeal of Swink v. Weintraub. Our goal is to ensure continued recognition of a community standard of care in medical malpractice litigation. The February 2009 opinion of the NC Court of Appeals in Swink undermines the community standard in favor of a national standard. The Swink opinion, if not reversed by the NC Supreme Court, would contradict clear statutory enactments of the NC General Assembly requiring use of the community standard. It is still uncertain whether the NC Supreme Court will accept the case for review, and if it does, whether our coalition of medical specialty organizations would be permitted to file a brief. Both NCMS and the AMA Litigation Center are participating in the effort together with the state specialty societies.


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