Dubois v. BrantleyAnnotate this Case
The issue this case presented for the Georgia Supreme Court's review centered on a question about the qualification of expert witnesses under OCGA 24-7-702 (“Rule 702”). Specifically, the issue reduced to what sort of experience was required of a practicing surgeon who was offered as an expert witness in a medical malpractice case to opine that another surgeon breached the applicable standard of medical care in the course of performing a surgical procedure. In this case, the Court of Appeals held that a surgeon was not qualified as a matter of law under Rule 702 (c)(2)(A) to give expert testimony about negligence in connection with a laparoscopic procedure to repair an umbilical hernia because he had not performed more than one laparoscopic procedure to repair an umbilical hernia in the last five years, notwithstanding that the surgeon had performed many other abdominal laparoscopic procedures during that time. The Supreme Court issued a writ of certiorari to consider whether the Court of Appeals understood Rule 702 (c)(2)(A) correctly, and concluded that it did not. Accordingly, the Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the Court of Appeals.