In the court case Baldwin v. Trawick, Trawick argued that Oconee Regional Medical Center intentionally caused emotional distress and injury to her peace and happiness and punitive damage after personnel at Oconee Regional Medical Center to Baldwin County’s Department of Family and Children Services (“DFACS”). According to a drug screening test done at Oconee, Trawick’s four year old daughter tested positive for drugs.
The facts show that Trawick’s daughter, Che’nel received medicine for an upper respiratory infection and bronchitis.Che’nel was later taken off the medicine due to behavioral disorientation. Che’nel’s pediatrician instructed Trawick to take her to Oconee because her symptoms weren’t improving. While at the emergency room Che’nel’s urine tested positive for PCP which was reported to DFACS. Trawick transferred her daughter to another hospital for a second opinion. True enough Che’nel tested negative for PCP causing DFACS to close the file on acknowledging the misdiagnosis.
The law states out of OCGA 19-7-5 (c)(1)(B) “reasonable cause to believe that a child has been abused shall report are cause reports of the abused to be reported to DFACS”. It also states that reports of this type should be made orally by telephone or by other means as soon as possible , and failure to make these reports may result in criminal prosecution OCGA 19-7-5 (e)(h). In addition, under OCGA 19-7-5 (f) “any…hospital… participating in the making of… or causing a report [regarding suspected child abuse] to be made to DFACS… or to an appropriate police authority… shall in so doing be immune from any civil or criminal liability that might otherwise be incurred or imposed, provided such participation… is made in good faith”.
Oconee Regional Medical Center argues that they were only acting in good faith when they reported Che’nels urine test to DFACS. This act of judgement entitled Oconee to immunity from Trawicks suit under OCGA 19-7-5(f). Trawick argues that the issue wasn’t if they were acting in good or bad faith, it was the apparent failure of Oconee’s personnel to take into consideration any negative effect that her prescribed medicine may have had.
The decision favored Oconee Regional Medical Center: That bad faith is not simply bad judgement or negligence it is a dishonest purpose and implies conscious doing of wrong. The court granting Oconees motion for summarizing