matter and reserved decision. For the reasons set forth herein, defendants' motion for partial summary judgment is hereby DENIED.
STATEMENT OF FACTS
Plaintiffs Gail P. Carter and Craig A. Carter, individually and on behalf of their infant son Neal A. Carter, instituted this malpractice action on August 16, 1991. Plaintiffs' original Complaint alleged that defendants University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey ("UMDNJ"), Victor Tuma, M.D. (a board certified pediatrician), Lawrence Taft, M.D., and Metuchen Pediatrics Associates, P.A. ("Metuchen"), failed to diagnose and treat properly the infant plaintiff's neurological medical condition, hydrocephalus.
An amended Complaint was filed with leave of this Court on June 23, 1993, adding Eleftherios Halivopoulos, M.D., also a board certified pediatrician, as a defendant.
Neal Carter was born on December 15, 1983, at the John F. Kennedy Hospital in Orange, New Jersey. Upon observing various abnormalities in the newborn infant, including a flattened lower lip, a large head and only two umbilical veins, the attending obstetrician, Dr. Drucker (who is not a defendant in this action) referred plaintiffs to defendants Metuchen, Dr. Tuma and Dr. Halivopoulos for both in-patient newborn care as well as follow-up pediatric treatment. The infant remained under the care of these doctors until July 1, 1984. In April 1984, the child also was examined by defendant Dr. Taft at UMDNJ. Sometime in 1984, plaintiffs relocated to Maryland where Neal received pediatric and neurological care from various physicians in the Washington, D.C. area. Subsequent to this move the named defendants rendered no further medical care to the infant.
Plaintiffs Gail and Craig Carter assert that when they left the care of defendants, they were unaware that Neal was suffering from any type of neurological impairment. See Deposition of Gail P. Carter, at 48:5-9. Although Gail Carter testified that she first observed developmental problems with Neal in the first year of his life, plaintiffs insist that, because of statements made by Drs. Tuma and Taft, they had no reason to believe that Neal was suffering from any neurological abnormality.
In 1987, Mr. and Mrs. Carter consulted an attorney regarding the medical care provided to Neal. Deposition of Gail P. Carter, at 116:19-24. Plaintiffs assert that at the time they consulted this attorney they had no reason to know that Neal's medical problems were related to the medical care rendered by defendants. They argue that "this determination could not have been made until 1990, after plaintiffs' attorneys had obtained all of Neal Carter's medical records and had them reviewed by experts. Plaintiffs' Brief at 3. The attorney consulted by plaintiffs did, however, forward authorizations from plaintiffs for the release of Neal's medical records in April 1987, to Dr. Tuma and Dr. Taft. Defendants' Exhibit B. There is nothing before the Court to indicate when those materials were actually forwarded to the attorney for review, but the authorizations clearly establish that all of the medical records were available for review in April 1987. Thereafter, in 1990 plaintiffs obtained an opinion from a medical expert that the care rendered by defendants was below acceptable standards. The present action was subsequently instituted.
According to Rule 56, summary judgment may only be granted if, from an examination of the pleadings and the proofs before the court, no genuine issue as to a material fact remains for trial and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. See Goodman v. Mead Johnson & Co., 534 F.2d 566, 573 (3d Cir.), cert. denied, 429 U.S. 1038, 50 L. Ed. 2d 748, 97 S. Ct. 732 (1977). Inferences flowing from the proofs before the court must be viewed in the light most favorable to the non-moving party. Id. Summary judgment may be granted against a party who fails to adduce facts sufficient to establish the existence of any element essential to that party's case, for which that party will bear the burden of proof at trial. See Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 91 L. Ed. 2d 265, 106 S. Ct. 2548 (1986). The moving party bears the initial burden of identifying evidence which demonstrates the absence of genuine issue of material fact. Celotex, 477 U.S. at 322-23. Once that burden has been met, the non-moving party must set forth "specific facts showing that there is a genuine issue for trial," or the factual record will be taken as presented by the moving party and judgment will be entered as a matter of law. See Matsushita Elec. Indus. Co. v. Zenith Radio Corp., 475 U.S. 574, 89 L. Ed. 2d 538, 106 S. Ct. 1348 (1986) (quoting Fed.R.Civ.P. 56(e)).
The instant summary judgment motion is directed solely at the adult plaintiffs's claims for (1) the extraordinary medical expenses incurred in providing their son the necessary medical care and (2) loss of consortium, companionship, society and services of their son. I will address each claim in seriatim.
A. Claim for Extraordinary Medical Expenses
Defendants contend that the adult plaintiffs' claims are barred by the applicable two year statute of limitations, which provides:
Every action at law for an injury to the person caused by the wrongful act, neglect or default of any person within this state shall be commenced within 2 years next after the cause of any such action shall have accrued.