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Isabelle V. v. City of New York – Case Brief Summary (New York)

In Isabelle V. v. City of New York (150 AD2d 312, 541 NYS2d 809 [1st Dept 1989]), the Appellate Division reversed the motion court's decision and granted defendant hospital's motion to dismiss the complaint based upon the immunity conferred upon it by Social Services Law § 419.

In Isabelle V., the plaintiff brought her three-year-old daughter to defendant hospital for examination. The child had a sore throat and vaginal discharge.

When plaintiff stated that her daughter's seven-year-old cousin who lived in the same household had a similar discharge, she was told to bring both children in for examination the next day.

During the examination of the seven year old, the child seemed very frightened and a Spanish interpreter was summoned.

Although the child's answers to questions about sexual abuse by someone in the household were negative, the interpreter believed that the child was not being truthful and that she was "afraid of something."

A physical examination of the seven year old revealed that she, too, had a vaginal discharge. Throat and vaginal cultures were taken from both children and sent to a laboratory for testing for venereal disease.

Ultimately the report suspecting abuse was determined to be unfounded.