Doctor sues Carroll hospital for $5.25 million

January 22, 2001|By Maria Blackburn | Maria Blackburn,SUN STAFF

A Carroll County General Hospital surgeon has filed a $5.25 million lawsuit against the hospital, claiming the staff destroyed his medical practice when he complained about the care patients were receiving.

In a lawsuit filed in Carroll Circuit Court, Dr. Wenifredo N. Iglesia of Taneytown says that when he criticized the quality of care at the county's only hospital, medical staff, "motivated by hatred" and with "the deliberate intent to injure" him, circulated rumors that he was mentally unstable, causing him to lose patients and income.

Iglesia, a Carroll County General surgeon for more than two decades, is seeking compensatory and punitive damages.

"Despite my service to the hospital, despite my loyalty ... my name has been destroyed," said Iglesia, who filed the suit this month. He resigned in September after the hospital's board of directors told him his admitting privileges would be revoked.

David Horn, Carroll General's vice president for marketing and a hospital spokesman, said Iglesia's lawsuit is without merit. "We just don't think that's the way things actually occurred," he said.

According to the lawsuit, Iglesia's problems with Carroll County General began after he was invited to join the organization's Surgical Quality Assurance Board in 1996.

When Iglesia presented two cases he had been assigned to review, court records show, members of the board disliked his criticism of the way the cases were handled. Iglesia said he began to notice what he considered a double standard in reviewing cases.

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