Sims v. Amisub of SCAnnotate this Case
In 2003, Kristy Orlowski, who was twenty-two years old and thirty-six weeks pregnant, was found unresponsive in her home by a family member. Less than twenty-four hours earlier, Orlowski had been seen by her prenatal care physician, Dr. Norman Taylor, to whom she complained of headaches, dizziness, nausea, and swelling of her hands and feet, all of which were symptoms of pre-eclampsia. Despite Orlowski's reported symptoms, Dr. Taylor failed to diagnose Orlowski's pre-eclampsia and sent her home from her doctor's visit without any special instructions or warnings. The Supreme Court granted a writ of certiorari to review the court of appeals' decision in which the court of appeals affirmed as modified the dismissal of this action, which was the second medical malpractice case filed by a conservator on behalf of Orlowski. The first medical malpractice action was filed in August 2006 against a different physician. When the trial of that action resulted in a defense verdict, Petitioner Gladys Sims filed this action on Orlowski's behalf seeking the same damages against different defendants, Respondents, Dr. Edward Creagh and Amisub of South Carolina, Inc., d/b/a Piedmont Medical Center ("Piedmont"). Respondents moved for summary judgment, asserting Petitioner's claim was barred by the statute of limitations. Petitioner contended her suit was timely filed because the three-year medical malpractice statute of limitations in section 15-3-545 of the South Carolina Code was subject to the tolling provision for insanity in section 15-3-40. The trial court granted summary judgment in favor of Respondents. Upon review, the Supreme Court found the court of appeals properly construed section 15-3-545 in rejecting Petitioner's reliance on section 15-3-40 in arguing for an eight-year statute of limitations, and accordingly, affirmed.