Wheelchair mishap at hospital leads to personal injury lawsuit

By Jon Campisi | Jul 26, 2011

A man who claims he got injured while a hospital patient is suing the medical care facility where the alleged incident took place.

Philadelphia attorney Bruce M. Rotfeld filed the personal injury lawsuit July 25 at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on behalf of city resident Brian Overbey.

The defendant named in the complaint is the Presbyterian Medical Center of the University of Pennsylvania Health System.

According to the lawsuit, Overbey underwent a left total knee replacement on July 27, 2009, at the hospital building at 51 N. 39th St.

After the surgery, while he was recovering, Overbey was left in a wheelchair outside of the physical therapy room when the wheelchair suddenly malfunctioned, causing the left leg rest of the device to drop, causing the plaintiff’s left foot and leg to drop to the floor, the lawsuit states.

“The heel of his left foot crashed into the floor causing his left knee to invert with excruciating pain,” the complaint states.

The lawsuit claims that the incident caused Overbey to experience great pain and agony, along with emotional tension and a shock to his nervous system.

As a result of the accident, Overbey was required to expend additional sums of money on medical care, the suit states. He also suffered a loss of earnings and earning capacity.

The lawsuit accuses the defendants of negligent and carelessness for failing to properly inspect the wheelchair, failing to prevent the accident and failing to eliminate the hazard.

Overbey demands judgment against the defendants in an amount not in excess of $50,000, plus delay damages, attorney’s fees and other related costs, for each of the two counts listed in the lawsuit.

The non-jury matter has been scheduled for a March 27, 2012 arbitration hearing.

The case number is 110702395.

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