The Fourth Department, reversing Family Court, determined the finding that mother did not medically neglect her children lacked a sound and substantial basis:
A neglected child is defined, in relevant part, as a child less than 18 years of age “whose physical, mental or emotional condition has been impaired or is in imminent danger of becoming impaired as a result of the failure of his [or her] parent . . . to exercise a minimum degree of care . . . in supplying the child with adequate . . . medical . . . care, though financially able to do so” … . “The statute thus imposes two requirements for a finding of neglect, which must be established by a preponderance of the evidence . . . First, there must be proof of actual (or imminent danger of) physical, emotional or mental impairment to the child . . . Second, any impairment, actual or imminent, must be a consequence of the parent’s failure to exercise a minimum degree of parental care . . . This is an objective test that asks whether a reasonable and prudent parent [would] have so acted, or failed to act, under the circumstances” … .
A parent’s failure to provide medical care as required by [Family Court Act § 1012 (f) (i) (A)] may be interpreted to include psychiatric medical care where it is necessary to prevent the impairment of the child’s emotional condition’ ” … . Here, upon our review of the record, we conclude that DSS established a prima facie case of medical neglect by presenting evidence that the mother failed to follow mental health treatment recommendations upon the daughter’s discharges from psychiatric hospitalizations for suicidal and homicidal ideation and that the mother failed to rebut DSS’s prima facie case … .
We further agree with the AFC that the evidence of neglect with respect to the daughter ” demonstrates such an impaired level of . . . judgment as to create a substantial risk of harm for any child in [the mother’s] care,’ ” thus warranting a finding of derivative neglect with respect to the younger children … . Matter of Olivia W. (Courtney W.), 2020 NY Slip Op 03296, Fourth Dept 6-12-20