United States District Court, D. New Jersey
GLADYS MENDOZA, personal representative of Elias Mendoza, Plaintiff,
INSPIRA MEDICAL CENTER VINELAND, et al., Defendants.
OFFICES OF JAMES R. RADMORE, P.C. By: James R. Radmore, Esq.
Counsel for Plaintiff.
GROSSMAN, HEAVEY & HALPIN, P.C. By: Elizabeth A. Wilson,
Esq. Counsel for Defendant Inspira Medical Centers, Inc.
LAW FIRM, P.C. By: Steven F. Drake, Esq. Counsel for
Defendant's Naeem Amin, M.D. and Kidney and Hypertension
& DeLAURENTIS, P.C. By: David P. Brigham, Esq. Counsel
for Defendants Andrew Zinn, M.D. and Cardiovascular
Associates of Delaware Valley, P.A.
L. HILLMAN, U.S.D.J.
a diversity medical malpractice suit. Plaintiff asserts that her
decedent, Elias Mendoza, was negligently treated by various
doctors and medical providers. Presently before the Court are
two motions for summary judgment; one filed by Defendants Dr.
Amin and Kidney and Hypertension Specialists, P.A., and
another filed by Defendant Inspira Medical Centers,
Both Motions assert that Plaintiff has failed to comply with
the substantive requirements of New Jersey's Affidavit of
Merit Statute, N.J.S.A. 2A:53A-41. For the reasons set forth
below, both motions will be granted.
Amended Complaint alleges the following facts:
9. On or about March 10, 2014, decedent-plaintiff presented
himself to the Emergency Room at Inspira Medical Center
Vineland for shortness of breath and was subsequently
admitted into the Intensive Care Unit.
10. While plaintiff [sic] was a patient of the defendants,
Inspira Medical Center Vineland, South Jersey Health Care and
Inspira Health Network, Inc., decedent underwent a cardiology
consultation performed by defendant, Andrew Zinn, M.D. and a
nephrology consultation performed by defendant, Naeem M.
11. Decedent was negligently treated, resulting in brain
damage, inability to ambulate, as well as damage to his
heart, so as to cause plaintiff [sic] to suffer severe and
debilitating pain and to further suffer complications,
injuries and conditions which have caused her [sic] a great
deal of physical and emotional pain which ultimately resulted
in his death on February 23, 2015.
(Amend. Compl. ¶¶ 9-11)
case appears to be principally based on a note entered in the
decedent's discharge summary (Pl's Ex. B), which
states in relevant part, “HOSPITAL COURSE: Over the
course of the patient's hospital stay, he tolerated BiPAP
and required dialysis. Unfortunately he was unable to
tolerate full treatments and continued to build up fluid. The
patient unfortunately had some difficulty receiving dialysis
in our intensive care unit due to staffing limitations, which
continued to exacerbate his continued difficulties with his
fluid overload state.”
Naeem Amin, M.D. is board certified in Internal Medicine with
a subspecialty in nephrology. As to Dr. Amin and his practice
group, Defendant Kidney and Hypertension Specialists, P.A.,
Plaintiff's theory of her case appears to be that Dr.
Amin's “failure to properly monitor [the decedent],
provide the necessary dialysis on a timely basis and attend
to [decedent's] hospital course” “resulted in
damage to decedent's heart and ultimately to his
death.” (Opposition Brief, Docket #19, p. 5)
Plaintiff asserts that Defendant Inspira Medical Centers'
“[in]adequate staffing . . . prevented a patient in
need of dialysis from receiving needed treatment [which] is a
deviation from the standard of care.” (Opposition
Brief, Docket #20, p. 2)
has provided one Affidavit of Merit, executed by Bruce D.
Charash, M.D. (Docket Entry #10) His affidavit states, in
relevant part, “I am a licensed, board certified
Cardiologist and Internist, and my practice has been
substantially devoted to this specialty for greater than five
years.” (Id. at ¶ 1) Dr. Charash opines
that all of the Defendants' ...