The risk of heart attack following strenuous exercise is well recognized and the use of defibrillators can be particularly effective if administered in the first few minutes after the cardiac episode commences. General Business Law § 627-a requires health clubs with 500 members or more to have a defibrillator along with a trained operator to use it. Lay responders are often able to use the device with little or no training. In a recent decision by the Appellate Division Second Department, health clubs now have an affirmative duty to use the defibrillator in an emergency. The Court of Appeals previously held that although General Business Law § 627-a requires that defibrillators be present along with a trained operator, there is no affirmative duty to use the device. Generally speaking, a person does not owe a duty to assist a person in peril. Nevertheless, in Miglino v. Bally Total Fitness of Greater New York, 06556-2010, the Appellate Division held that since the statute requires health clubs to have defibrillators and someone trained to use it, health clubs may be liable for not using it in an emergency.
Horse jockeys suffer debilitating and sometimes fatal injuries when their horses break down while racing. Between 700 and 800 racehorses die from injuries every year. The New York Times recently conducted an investigation that reveals that many of these horses were given cocaine, cobra venom, Viagra and other performance-enhancing substances. According to the Times, an average of 24 horses die every week at American racetracks. There are no postmortem examinations of the animals. Since 2009, there are records of 3,800 incidents of illegal doping at American tracks. Given that only a small percentage of horses are actually tested, this figure is likely to be greatly understated. During that same period, the number of horses that broke down due to injury is 6,600, a figure that is on the rise. The general consensus is that this high figure is due to drugs.
Brain injuries from concussions, which result from brain movement within the skull after an impact, may lead to problems with memory and communication, personality changes, as well as depression and the early onset of dementia. Multiple blows to the head can lead to long-term brain injury, including memory loss, dementia and depression.