Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - April 25, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
tor ail exterior surfaces
By Harrison Weber
DES MOINES (IDPA) -Calling the case a “medical fiasco”, the Iowa supreme court has awarded $912,124 to a Forest City couple for their child who suffers from severe brain damage.
It’s the largest judgment involving malpractice in Iowa’s history.
It stems from a suit filed by Mr. and Mrs. Orvin Schneblv, who claimed Dr. John M. Baker of Mason City had failed to properly treat, their son, Kelly, for a blood incompatibility problem shortly after his birth in 1964,,
Three years ago, District Judge L. E. Plummer awarded the Schneblys $912,124 for their child, and $132,674 for
themselves. They had sought a judgment of $4 million.
The judgment for $1,044,798 was against Dr. Baker.
In its 44-page opinion issued Wednesday, the supreme court held that the Schneblys were “barred by limitations” and not entitled to the $132,674 for themselves. They had filed an amendment petition bringing in Dr. Baker as a defendant more than two years after the commission of the alleged act.
But the supreme court said the $912,124 in damages awarded to the child “are not
The damages include $3 85,4 4 0 for care and therapy, $226,684 for loss of earning capacity after becom
ing of age, and $300,000 for injuries for pain and suffering and total disability.
The Schneblys originally also had filed suits against Mercy hospital in Mason City and Mason City pathologists Dr. George Joyce and Dr. Paul Potter. Those were settled out of court prior to the start of the district court trial.
The defendants then filed various cross-petitions for indemnity or contribution, including such a cross-petition by Dr. Baker against the hospital and Drs. Joyce and Potter.
In his 1971 decision, Judge Plummer ruled Dr. Baker was the sole and proximate cause of the damage resulting in the severe retardation of the child. The lower court found Drs. Joyce and Potter were
negligent. But the court found this negligence was not a proximate cause of the injuries, as Dr. Baker’s negligence was a superceding cause.
But the majority of the supreme court found Dr. Baker, Mercy hospital, and the two pathologists all guilty of negligence and ordered one-half of the judgment, $456,062, to be paid by Dr. Baker and the remaining one-half to be paid jointly by the hospital and two pathologists.
The majority included Jus-t i c e s C. Edwin Moore, Maurice Rawlings, Ward Reynoldson, David Harris, Mark McCormick and Harvey Uhlenhopp who wrote the opinion.
Chiropractic Bili Sent to Gov. Ray
DES MOINES (AP)—Legisla-professionalize” chiropractors. I lamps cold packs, vibrators tive action on a bill to expand , “By forbidding advertising, we and other simple devises, the definition of chiropractic-are saying the code of ethics “Yet, I find the vibrator my has been completed by the Iowa'adopted by chiropractors is no chiropractor used on my sinuses house. good,” West said. '‘Your local is used in barbershops, and the
The bill was passed 62-29 and chiropractor might not appreci- vibrator used by high school sent to the governor Wednesday ate that.” 'athletic trainers,” Dunton said,
after an unsuccessful effort by Opposed “And heat lamps you can use
Rep. Delwyn Stromer (R-Gar-; Rep. Harold McCormick (D- yourself at home.”
rison) to strike out a senate Manchester) said a committee -
provision banning advertising named by Gov. Robert Ray last Rillc in
h\7 Arc Ivpar trx m/oliiuto fVtn hill hurl , V^f/7wf DI! IO Ifl
The house refused to adopt an amendment by Rep. Edgar Holden (R-Davenport) to remove the advertising ban from the bill
DES MOINES (AP)—Bills in
I year to evaluate the bill had
recommended against its pas- I Qnislot U TG sage and it is opposed by the *
Chiropractic Society of Iowa. ... _ _ . , .
Rep. Keilh Dunton (D-Thorn-j'hme Iowa Legislaltiire Wednes-
when it was up for consideration burg), chief sponsor of the bill,! ^ Passed By Senate previously. ! said there are two factions1. srwr, to establish professional ncens-
.... , . .. I , mg boards. 42-1. To house.
“Lnfair 'among chiropractors, one favor-! Sews, to appropriate funds from the
_ , , ., , . I. ® j ,, : primary road fund to the highway com
Stromer asked the house to mg the bill and the other oppos-1 cession to qive commission employes a
.J J . . ° .. rr |7’2 percent pay hike 45-1. To house.
reconsider the amendment, say- mg it. spun, to expand the way* a farmer
,, j ... , « a u .. ,, .I , ... . icar* receive fuel tax credit. 45-0. To
mg the advertising ban was! But he said the way the bill is house
u i * • •• ' ii ii ii i . . SF59, To expand the purposes for which
grossly unfair * ai; an in-;written, .the older chiropractors the 2v2-miii schoolhouse tax may be used. vasion of chiropractors’ right to who believe they should restrict j 45sniw,gToerra?s* mileage rate paid state “express themselves.” themselves to dealing with j ersfnu, ’to15approbate T$°97h,ooo %o the
But his motion failed 61-311 human ailments by adjustment ?eTtfnrqTa7er0Lppheson4^n,fo house/ ,or after Rep. Carl Nielsen (D-Al- of the spine and other incidental tinle,3a8DDrL3riafsionbltoh the ,auditoarndofct°he toona) warned the whole bill adjustments can continue to do saHFS9VnToloaapprdopria°te smooo torusres-might be lost if the ban was that, while others can qualify ,orsRM4?f T^?pc^riiit^ $28Tommio”’to Chiropractors may for use of other techniques. j &ed &!?ati!E wAm?So. to hou«.inQS not like the ban but they can live j Vibrators or?iJi”:Wntm™BoX$5ci“e’$ JST*
SFI348, To appropriate $20,000 to the educational radio and television facility I board to lease land for construction of channel 36 tower. 88-3. To governor.
SF1378, To approoriate $2.9 million for state qrants to 65 local sewage treatment facility construction projects. 82-10. To governor.
SF1328, To raise from $27,917 to $30,417 the 1974-75 appropriation for the commission on the status of women. 85-4. To governor.
SF1385, To authorize state fair board lo release money tor premiums to the Adams county fair although if did not certify its claim by the deadline. 85-5. To governor.
SFI34, To license and regulate the practice of public accounting, 77-7. To senate for action on amendment.
SF1225, To require all health practitioners and school officials to report cases of suspected child abuse and create a central registry for child abuse information. 90-0. To senate for action on amendment.
IOWA CITY - The Scottish Highlanders will present an “Afternoon in the Highlands”! concert Saturday at 3 p.m. in Clapp recital hall. The concert is one of the events to take place at the University of Iowa in conjunction with Parents Spring weekend. There is no admission charge for the concert and no tickets are required.
Justices Clay Legrand and Warren Recs dissented from this part of the opinion. They said they have no quarrel with treating the two pathologists as a single entity for purpose of contribution, but they disputed the finding which associates the hospital with them for that purpose.
The result, they said, is that the contribution is distributed in halves rather than thirds, and the further result is that “Dr. Baker — unfairly — is required to pay one-half of the total judgment rather than one-third,” which they believe would be the correct assessment.
Justice M. L. Mason of Mason City took no part in the opinion.
In appealing the decision of the lower court, Dr. Baker contended he had not received a fair trial on the whole case. The supreme court said it had examined the record and concluded “this contention is not substantiated.”
Young Kelly Schnebly suffers from severe brain damage known a kcrnicterus, which is caused by failure to perform an exchange blood transfusion soon enough after birth.
In citing testimony received by the lower court, it was noted that Kelly’s father was worried about the possibility of brain damage. He also suspected the child was deaf. Schnebly set off a firecracker on tho floor and the child did not flinch. He testified he knew then the child could not hear.
The boy was subsequently taken to University hospitals at Iowa City for evaluation. where the parents learned more of Kelly’s disabilities and the extent of his limitations.
'Oklahoma!1 at Benton
The Benton Community high school music department will present the musical, Olcla-homel", Friday and Saturday at 8 at the Blairstown attendance conter gymnasium. Pictured above, Curley, portrayed by Randy Merchant, tries to musically persuade Laurey (Deb Whitworth) to take a ride in ' The Surrey with the Fringe on lop . Aunt Eller (Jane Mullen) looks on approvingly.
June Primary May Be Out In Johnson
IOWA CITY—Johnson County Supervisor Chairman Richard Bartel Thursday morning lashed out at the actions of his fellow supervisors, saying board action “may have placed the June 4 primary in jeopardy.”
Bartel said Friday that he had suggested dropping current legal action against Data Pro-jcessing, Inc.. Cedar Rapids, and Delores Rogers, Johnson county' auditor.
The board, in an on-again, off-
again series of votes, has asked a declaratory judgment on the legality of Auditor Rogers entering into a contract with Data Processing to handle the county’s voter registration process.
The supervisors have questioned whether Mrs. Rogers may contract for such services without supervisor approval.
Bartel contends “with mv fel
low supervisors refusing to reconsider this political football, I papers were served Wednesday on Mrs. Rogers, and I presume on Data Processing.
“Now that we are in litigation, it is my understanding Data Processing has no obligation to perform contracted services. This could blow the June 4 primary right out the window.”
with it, Nielsen said Rep, James West (R-State of the present law, he said, chi-Center) said the bill would '‘de-ropractors couldn’t use heat
Under a strict interpretation uhfJw!°¥o‘ cav
Legislative Notes by Frank Nye
Legislative Gears Prove Faster Than Briners Feet
DES MOINES — Who says the legislature can’t move into high gear when it has to? Or, when it doesn’t have to, for that matter.
Not State Rep. Adrian Brinck (D-West Point).
Brinck beat a path up one floor to the legislative service
center one day recently to have an amend-_
ment prepared for a bill.
When he returned a few minutes later — lf vlj|
you guessed it, the bill had been passed: JF . jP
State Rep. James Jordan (D-Marion) filed a statement of organization of a political com- HHRfeJF pi
mittee with Secretary of State Melvin Syn- ■HpfRg-horst recently. y’ ~V,4f
It was a statment of the organization of Nj
his own political committee to work for his reelection. Chairman is none other than Jordan brinck himself. Secretary-treasurer is Mrs. (Mildred) Jordan, his spouse and his legislative clerk.
Name of the committee: “Jimid Jordan Committee”. The : Jimid Is a contraction of Jim and Mid with a common “rn.”
-___ certain claires made
against the state. 47-0. To governor.
HF MSS, To approDrlate funds to ooerate the civil rights commission. 45-0. To governor.
Introduced In Senate
SF1387, To appropriate $5,000 to the office of citizens' aide. Appropriations.
SF1388, To appropriate $250,000 to the I school budaet review committee. Appropriations.
SF 1389, To appropriate $5,000 to the | Iowa academy of science for its centenni-j al observance. Appropriations.
SF 1390, To limit campaign spending bv i candidates. Hansen.
SF1391, To revise the adoption laws.
: Hansen and Shaw.
; SF1392, To extend social security cover-
! age to legislators. Andersen.
SFI393, To permit boards of supervisors to authorize warrants for stated purposes
i prior to board review. County govern
5F1394, To allow courts to place female offenders in a community based correctional program. Judiciary.
SFI395, To remove the chief deputy
sheriff from lurisdiction of county civil
service commissions. Judiciary.
SFI394, To appropriate $80,000 to In
spect animal breeders. Appropriations.
SF1397, To appropriate $4 million to the energy policy council to study railroads and assist railroad companies in Iowa Appropriations.
Siqned By Governor
HF14S3, To appropriate $1 million for child welfare foster care.
HF 1399, To revise the election statutes.
Passed By Hoese
HF299, To expand the definition of chi-1 ropractic. 42-29. To governor.
She (triter i&apilm (fosrtlr
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4A The Cedar Rapids Gazette: Thurs., April 25, 1974
$912,124 Award in 'Medical Fiasco'