January 15, 2018 Recent Legal News







Peer Review and Employment


Florida v Kapoor

Dr. Om Kapoor, an infectious disease specialist, has been accused by a patient of masturbating while examining him.  The patient went to the police with the napkin he says Kapoor masturbated in.  He is now on leave from Baptist Health.

Florida v Love-Robinson

This now twenty year old posed as a physician starting at age 17.  He was just sentenced to three years.

Florida v Choudhury

Dr. Asif Choudhury fo the Ft. Meyers, Florida, area has been indicted on sexual assault.  He was indicted on the same charges five years ago but that was dropped.  This time the gastroenterologist was accused of sticking fingers into vaginas during colonoscopies.  

US v Chin
USCA Massachusetts

The appellate court overturned the district court regarding charges dismissed against pharmacists Kathy Chin and Michelle Thomas.  The lower court dismissed them from the case stating they were only doing menial jobs but the higher court said the jury should decide that.  This is the case where the compounding lab caused multiple fungal infections due to poor techniques.


US v Benevis LLC

The company and its 130 affiliated Kool Smile dental offices agreed to pay a fine of $23.9 to settle allegations that it billed Medicaid for unnecessary pediatric dental procedures.   The allegation also contends that Kool pressured dentists to be productive and disciplined those who weren't.  

Minnesota v Johnson

David Johnson, the former Allina VP, was indicted for embezzlement.  They believe he stole $750,000 but only about $269,000 during the five year statute of limitations.  

US v Newton

Former St. Joseph Hospital in Lexington, Minnesota, James Newton had been convicted of mail and wire fraud and sentenced to 27 months in prison.  He and a co-conspirator will also be responsible for repaying $552,660.  He received kickbacks for awarding contracts to his co-conspirator.        Top



The hospital association lost another battle with the administration.   This time it was the 340B cuts the feds made to the hospital.  The judge ruled the area was not ripe for ruling as the cuts had not gone into effect.  The suit was initiated in November 2017 and the cuts did not come into effect until January, 2018.  The hospitals used to receive 6% over aver sales price.  They now will receive much less.  The AHA says they will refile and appeal.  Let's hope the quality of the hospitals are better than their legal team. 

Stuart v Western University

Dr. James Stuart, is suing the Canadian school for giving him a substandard education.  He wants $11 million.  He says the medical training was so poor that he failed the medical microbiologist exam three times.  He says that he was inadequately supervised during his residency and at the end he was the only person in the department.  All the instructors had left.  

Moe v US

A fourth case has been filed against the government for pregnant illegal alien teen wanting to have an abortion.  The article did not say if the ACLU wanted the feds to pay for the abortion.  After the suit was filed Moe was released to a sponsor for the abortion.

Patients v Centene

A law suit against the insurer alleging they do not provide adequate access to physicians in 15 states.  The suit states the company lists physicians who do not belong to the insurer's panels.  Centene deals mainly in Medicaid patients.  This suit is a federal one by attorney's who want publicity and piggybacks on a Washington state regulators to fine Centene last month for the same thing.        Top


Patients v Charles River Medical Associates
To Be Filed

Another case of negligence.  This time the radiology group in Framingham, Mass., lost a portable hard drive with information of almost 10,000 people.  They did not encrypt the drive.  They are warning people to take watch over their credit reports but do not offer to pay for protection caused by their negligence.

Byrne v Avery Center for Ob/Gyn
Connecticut Supreme Court

The state high court made quick work on a lower court ruling that physicians did not have to keep records confidential.  The plaintiff states the medical office without her consent sent her medical records to a probate court under a subpoena issued by her child's father in a paternity case.  The lower court ruled the state had never recognized a common law duty to physicians to keep their patient's information confidential.  Dumb judge.

Patients v Aetna

Aetna agreed to pay $17 million to the class of patients that were harmed when the company revealed thousands of customers HIV status in mailings.  The information was revealed on the widows of envelopes sent to the patients.  

Attorneys v 69 Indiana Hospitals
Case dismissed

Two publicity seeking attorneys filed suit against the hospitals by alleging the hospitals lied by certifying they were meaningful use of EHR technology.  They filed the action in 2016 and now have voluntarily dismissed the suit.        Top  


Massillon, Ohio v Quorum

The city has filed suit to attempt to keep Quorum from closing Affinity Medical center.  They are paying outside counsel to do this.         Top


Gearhart v Scripps Mercy Hospital

The plaintiff alleges that the hospital delay of surgery caused the death of the patient.  He had a history of peptic ulcers and was in pain when the ambulance took him to the ED.  He was found after two hours to have a small bowel perforation and Dr. Yang, the surgeon on call, did not come to the hospital for several hours to see the patient or start the surgery.  The suit alleges the patient by that time was in septic shock and he died.  Yang was in surgery at another hospital and may or may not have called for backup.

Wright v Meadville Medical Center

The local police arrested the wrong man and the hospital injected him with an antipsychotic drug that put him out for half a day.  The suit claims neither took any steps to determine if he actually was the person even after Wright kept claiming they had the wrong person.  No one will hear of this again as it will be quickly and quietly settled for money.

Yarbrough v Northwestern Memorial Hospital
Illinois Supreme Court

The plaintiff went to Erie, a federally qualified health center in Chicago and was found to be pregnant.  She was told she would likely deliver her baby at Northwestern.  This made her believe the entities were the same.  She had a premature baby and sued Northwestern for negligent prenatal care.    Northwestern asked for summary judgment which was denied by the trial court but certified whether or not there was apparent agency.  The court of appeal said suit against Northwestern was OK even though they had nothing to do with the health center except to give them some money and credential their physicians.  The Supreme Court reversed the court of appeal.  They said since there was no direct agency there could be no vicarious liability.

Patients v 3M

The state of Minnesota court judge tossed the case that alleged the 3M warming device caused bone infections in orthopedic patients.  He said there was no scientific evidence that linked the two.  This is different than the federal case based on the same facts and experts that allowed the case to go forward.

Hartman v Bayer, J&J

The trial judge tossed the jury verdict against the companies that alleged Xarelto of ailing to warn that a blood thinner may cause bleeding.  This loses a $28 million payday for the attorneys.  All trials so far have been defense verdicts.

Harber v Shasta Regional Medical Center

The patient went to the hospital for the removal of a benign abdominal tumor.  She later had intestinal obstruction from small intestine being hooked on a 8" forceps left behind in the prior surgery.  Just pay the money.

Turner v VA

In another case of just pay the money the plaintiff filed suit due to a scalpel left in his abdomen.  He had a prior robotically assisted radical prostatectomy in 2013.  The VA has admitted fault.

Condon v Booth
North Dakota Superior Court

In a lower court ruling that is sure to be appealed, the court ruled the jury verdict of money over the state limits for non economic damages in a medical malpractice case was OK.  The superior court judge thought the law was illegal.

Great Britain v Bramhall

Mr. Simon Bramhall, a transplant surgeon who put his initials in at least two patient's livers with an argon laser was ordered to do 120 hours of unpaid community service and fine 10,000 pounds.  

Bigler v Olympus
New Trial

The judge in the original trial which found the design of scopes were not unsafe so did not award punitive damages only compensatory ordered a new trial.  The reason is new evidence that Olympus failed to properly disclose internal emails that raised safety concerns about the scopes.  Olympus had shared the emails in their original Japanese and not translated as required.  He also ordered Olympus to pay $250,000 to Bigler and pay for the new trial.  Olympus will appeal the judge's order.        Top

Peer Review and Employment

Employees v Montrose Memorial Hospital

Employees of the Colorado hospital who were fired and filed an age discrimination case will be paid $400,000 plus legal costs in a case pursued by EEOC.  The settlement included that the employees may apply for open positions at the hospital but does not require then to be hired. 

Doran v Mercy Hospital

 Dwayne Doran filed suit against Mercy Hospitals for wrongful termination.  The head of security was fired after CMS came down the the hospitals for the way they acted with patients.  The suit claims Doran wanted to train the staff but did not due to hospital policy.  He was then fired along with 11 others who may have received money to not testify against the hospital.

LaBarbara v NYU Winthrop Hospital

The ultrasound technician has filed suit against the hospital after being fired for not getting a flu shot.  She is pregnant with her first child and was told by two physicians not to get the flu shot.  She agreed to wear a mask and gown but was fired anyway.  The hospital says the American College of OB recommends all pregnant women get a flu shot.  She wants to be holistic.  

Labrot v Illinois Medical Board
Ill Ct. App

The Chiropractor admitted to reviewing a Kentucky patient's file without authorization and was reprimanded and fined $1000 by the Kentucky board.  He reported it to the Illinois board and was rewarded with an additional $1000 fine and a license reprimand.  He appealed and the appellate court said his punishment was too harsh and reversed the reprimand and fine. 

Mathews v Denver Health Medical Center

Donald Trump may not be a popular president among certain people but if one supports him should you be fired?  Mathews, a 69 year old nurse at the hospital she was fired for just that.  The nurse claims she watched the election with a prior administrator who was a patient.  She was asked who she thought would win the election and said "she was praying Trump would".  The patient called the now administration and complained and Mathews was fired.  Let us hope she not only wins the suit but gets a bundle in the process.        Top


DISCLAIMER: Although this article is updated periodically, it reflects the author's point of view at the time of publication. Nothing in this article constitutes legal advice. Readers should consult with their own legal counsel before acting on any of the information presented.