Lawsuits Filed Against Kaiser Permanente For Medical Malpractice

| by Khier Casino

A man has filed a $5 million lawsuit against Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group and Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States, Inc., claiming that he almost died when labs revealed “significant infection” but was not treated or notified because it was “the weekend.”

The spinal infection resulted in quadriplegia and complete disability, Courthouse News reported.

In the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, Johnny B. Wright is suing the two companies for the medical negligence of Kaiser doctors Rumana T. Shameem and Dr. Francis A. Freisinger, an unidentified advice nurse and other doctors who treated him at Holy Cross Hospital, a non-Kaiser facility. A lawsuit was also filed by Wright’s wife Linda for loss of consortium.

According to the complaint, Johnny Wright was diagnosed with “a wrist strain, back strain and inflammatory arthritis,” at Doctor’s Community Hospital on Dec. 16, 2010. He allegedly called Kaiser advice nurse Heather Thomas the next morning because of lack of relief from the pain medications he was given.

Thomas recommended he visit a Kaiser hospital where Dr. Shameem ordered an x-ray, blood count, and an injection of Toradol. Johnny Wright was then prescribed Oxycodone and Prednisone, which is used for arthritis and suppresses the immune system.

This is not the first time the Kaiser members have received complaints.

In October, a class-action lawsuit was filed against the consortium for unsuccessfully treating patients with mental illness.

Contra Costa Times reported that the lawsuit was filed on behalf of three California plaintiffs but sought to represent “thousands of other Kaiser members who have been harmed by Kaiser's systemic denial of timely access to mental health services.”

Kaiser was hit with a $4 million fine by the state Department of Managed Health Care for having "serious deficiencies," including lack of information for patients with mental illness and no way of making sure patients with mental health issues were monitored.

Another class-action was filed against Kaiser Permanente in the beginning of November, this time by a woman in Clark County, Wash.

Mary E. Benton blames the company for testing patients’ blood for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) without them knowing, The Columbian reported.

The lawsuit, filed in Clark County Superior Court, seeks “$1,000 or actual damages for each patient whose right to opt out was negligently violated and $10,000 or actual damages for each patient whose right to opt out was recklessly violated.”