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RATAY v. LIU (12/10/69)

decided: December 10, 1969.

RATAY
v.
LIU, APPELLANT



Appeal from judgment of Court of Common Pleas of Indiana County, Sept. T., 1967, No. 378, in case of Charles J. Ratay, Jr. v. Yu Chen Liu.

COUNSEL

Joseph W. Serene, with him Serene and Fee, for appellant.

Blair V. Pawlowski, for appellee.

Wright, P. J., Watkins, Montgomery, Jacobs, Hoffman, Spaulding, and Cercone, JJ. Opinion by Montgomery, J.

Author: Montgomery

[ 215 Pa. Super. Page 549]

In this trespass action brought by Charles J. Ratay, Jr., appellee, against Yu Chen Liu, appellant, for damages as a result of an automobile accident, a verdict in the sum of $7,500 was returned by a jury in the Court of Common Pleas of Indiana County. Appellant's motion for a new trial having been refused and judgment entered on the verdict, this appeal followed.

This appeal presents the narrow question of whether the trial court erred in admitting in evidence five exhibits containing a detailed listing of medical tests or treatments given to plaintiff-appellee by doctors or hospitals and a statement of charges therefor when said doctors or representatives from the hospitals were not called to testify at the trial. Appellant here and in the court below has contended that the verdict is excessive. However, since she makes that contention on the basis that the jury was permitted to consider the above medical expenses, we believe that the sole issue on this appeal is the evidentiary question aforesaid.

As a result of the automobile accident involving appellant which occurred on July 26, 1965, in the Borough of Indiana, plaintiff-appellee suffered personal injuries and property damage to his automobile in the amount of $716.27. Plaintiff complained of an injury to his back on the right side above the hip, evidenced by contusions thereto; headaches; and kidney and urinary disorders, evidenced by internal and external bleeding, which began the day after the accident. A few days after the accident he saw his family physician, Dr. Raymond L. Dandrea, who treated him for those injuries until October 23, 1965. However, in January, 1966, plaintiff twice was treated by Dr. Dandrea for severe nose bleed, for which Dr. Dandrea referred him to Dr. Cope, a specialist, in Indiana, Pennsylvania.

[ 215 Pa. Super. Page 550]

Dr. Dandrea also referred plaintiff to Dr. Carney, a kidney specialist, in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. Twice in 1966 Dr. Carney sent plaintiff to Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital, where he was given a cystoscopic examination, X-rays, and urine and blood tests. With the approval of Dr. Dandrea,*fn1 plaintiff in 1966, 1967,*fn2 and 1968 went to the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, where on each of four visits he received X-rays, and urine and blood tests; and on the last occasion, in plaintiff's words, "They took a piece out of the kidney," which was described as a biopsy, a recognized procedure for making tests of the tissues of living bodies.

The five exhibits, all of which were admitted in evidence over appellant's objection, consist of the following. Exhibit D, Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital, October 24, 1966, for $638.30; Exhibit E, Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital, October 24, 1966, for $236.55; Exhibit F, Drs. Brisini, Carney, and Strunk, February 9, 1967, for $100; Exhibit G, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, June 27, 1966, for $154; Exhibit H, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, September 9, 1968, for $152.

At the trial the plaintiff testified that he had received all the services indicated on the above five exhibits and described them in great detail. Dr. Dandrea, who ...


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