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Concerns Over Concurrent Surgeries Spark Whistleblower

By: Law Offices of Robert Vaage

A former anesthesiologist at Massachusetts General Hospital recently filed a whistleblower lawsuit over the hospital’s use of concurrent surgeries. The suit maintains that the policy of allowing surgeons to “double book” procedures put patients at risk.

Anesthesiologist Files Lawsuit

In her lawsuit, Lisa Wollman, M.D. maintains that at least five MGH orthopedic surgeons regularly performed concurrent surgeries, which put patient safety at risk. As FierceHealthcare.com reports, the suit also alleges that the doctors committed Medicare and Medicaid fraud by billing for procedures in which they were not in the operating room for critical parts of the surgery.

“This [concurrent surgeries] often meant an unwitting patient was left fully anesthetized—unconscious, paralyzed, intubated, dependent on a ventilator to breathe—for longer than medically necessary, often in the care of trainees, without the backup of a properly qualified surgeon, despite legal requirements,’’ the complaint states.

As San Diego medical malpractice attorneys, we will be closely following the lawsuit against MGH. We are also hopeful that the continued media attention spurs additional efforts to prohibit concurrent surgeries, particularly in cases where critical parts of the two procedures occur at the same time.

If you or someone you love has suffered serious harm due to a surgical error, don’t hesitate to contact a San Diego medical malpractice attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation.