Phila. judge dismisses Aria Health System as a defendant in medical malpractice case

By Jon Campisi | Apr 25, 2012

A Philadelphia Common Pleas Court judge on Tuesday granted a motion made by a defense attorney for an area health agency seeking to have his client dismissed as a defendant in a medical malpractice case.

During the brief petition hearing at City Hall, Judge Idee C. Fox granted the motion by attorney Mark J. Hermanovich, of the firm Eckert, Seamans, Chernin & Mellot, to dismiss Philadelphia-based Aria Health System as a defendant in the case Konieczny v. The Foot & Ankle Group PC et al.

Frederick Konieczny filed his personal injury claim against Philadelphia-based Foot & Ankle Group in late September 2011 alleging he sustained injuries after doctors left a surgical sponge inside his body following a medical procedure on Oct. 6, 2009.

The lawsuit, filed in state court by Philadelphia lawyer Louis Podel, also names as a defendant Michael B. Miller, the doctor who performed the surgery.

The third defendant named in the complaint was Aria Health System.

Hermanovich filed the motion to dismiss Aria as a defendant in mid December of last year, court records show.

The court docket in the case shows that in late January of this year, Fox granted the parties involved leave to conduct limited discovery on the issue of Aria’s involvement with the incident that is subject to the litigation.

Fox gave the parties until April 20 to submit to the court any notes of testimony, exhibits, documents and additional memoranda and scheduled oral arguments for April 24.

During the petition hearing, which lasted mere minutes, Fox granted Hermanovich’s request to have his client dismissed from the litigation.

Fox did not elaborate on her decision.

The other defendants remain for now. They are accused of negligence for allegedly leaving a sponge inside Konieczny when he underwent surgery in October 2009 related to a dorsal open wound and granular-based plantar wounds.

The lawsuit alleges that Miller and his medical staff failed to accurately count the number of sponges used during the surgery and remove them from the plaintiff’s foot.

Konieczny was readmitted to Aria Hospital in late April 2010 at which time Miller performed a second surgery on the plaintiff, during which the doctor discovered and subsequently removed the foreign body.

The lawsuit states that Konieczny has continued to experience complications related to the sponge having been left inside his body for the six-month period.

Court records show that the trial is expected to get under way sometime in October 2013.


The case ID number is 110903392.

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