MacDonald v. City Hospital, Inc.Annotate this Case
In a medical professional liability action, the jury returned a verdict in favor of appellants James and Debbie MacDonald, which included an award of $1,500,000 for noneconomic loss. In accordance with W. Va. Code 55-7B-8, the circuit court reduced the noneconomic damages award to $500,000, finding that James suffered a permanent and substantial physical deformity warranting application of the higher cap amount. On appeal, the MacDonalds argued that the cap contained in the statute was unconstitutional, and therefore, the circuit court erred in reducing the jury's verdict. Appellees, Sayeed Ahmed, M.D. and City Hospital, asserted a cross-assignment of error, arguing that the $250,000 cap should have been applied in this case. City Hosptial also cross assigned as error the circuit court's denial of its motion for summary judgment, motion for judgment as a matter of law, and motion for a new trial. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) the statute as amended in 2003 was constitutional, (2) the circuit court did not err in applying the higher cap, and (3) the circuit court did not err in denying the motions filed by City Hospital.