Expert Report Under Section 13.01(R)(6) In Texas

In Palacios v. American Transitional Care Ctrs., Inc., the Houston Court of Appeals was faced with reviewing an adequacy challenge to an expert's report. 4 S.W.3d 857, 859-60 (Tex. App.--Houston [1st Dist.] 1999, pet. filed). In reversing the trial court's dismissal of the plaintiffs' claims, the appellate court, applying the summary judgment standard of review instead of abuse of discretion, noted that the section 13.01(r)(6) expert report was designed to weed out frivolous suits in the early stages of litigation. The controlling issue is not whether the report provided the requisite "fair summary" but whether the report showed a good faith effort at meeting section 13.01(r)(6)'s requirements. See id. at 862. The appellate court concluded that the statements on the report were a good faith effort to meet section 13.01(r)(6)'s requirements in that it was directed toward the hospital and stated that the hospital's actions fell below the accepted standard of care. See id. at 861. The report noted that a hospital should have taken precautions for a patient who fell from his hospital bed and suffered yet a second brain injury when he fell due to his history of falling. See id. Because precautions to prevent his fall were not taken the standard of care had not been met. See id. at 863.