Doctor who lied about credentials settles malpractice lawsuit

A New Jersey doctor who performed surgery without proper qualifications has settled a malpractice lawsuit.

New Jersey surgeon lacked proper training and had criminal record

A lawsuit involving a New Jersey anesthesiologist who misled patients about his past and credentials has settled a medical malpractice lawsuit with one of his patients, according to the Star-Ledger. The anesthesiologist performed spinal surgery on the patient despite not having trained in neurosurgery. At the time of the surgery, his only experience performing spinal surgeries had been three weeks of training in South Korea on cadavers. Additionally, he had previously been convicted of negligent manslaughter in the United Kingdom after one of his patients died during a tooth removal.

Manslaughter, lack of credentials

According to The Record, the doctor performed a seven-hour spinal surgery on the woman in July 2008 at a North Jersey same-day surgery center. Unbeknownst to the patient, the doctor was trained neither as a neurosurgeon nor an orthopedist. Furthermore, his only actual spinal surgery training was during three weeks spent in South Korea working on cadavers. An investigation later found that the woman's surgery was not only unnecessary, but it had been inadequately performed. She recently settled her malpractice lawsuit with the doctor for $425,000.

Perhaps most shockingly of all, however, is that the doctor had been convicted of negligent manslaughter in England in 2001. In that case, a patient had died during a tooth extraction procedure for which the doctor performed as the anesthesiologist. However, because a criminal background check is not required for doctors renewing their medical license in New Jersey, he was able to work in the state.

License suspended

The attorney general looked at the above case, along with ten others, and chose to suspend the doctor's license in 2012. Although the doctor appealed that decision, the Board of Medical Examiners finally decided to revoke his license earlier this year.

The board found that the doctor posed a threat to public safety and also found numerous problems with actions taken by the doctor during the spinal surgery described above. The board concluded that his conduct was so bad that it decided to levy a $300,000 fine on the doctor, more than what a judge had previously recommended. Perhaps just as troublingly, the doctor posted a YouTube video attacking the patient who had launched the malpractice suit against him. Bizarrely, in the video he describes the woman as walking around in her garden "briskly" and "without a care in the world," despite the video clearly showing her using a cane.

Medical malpractice in New Jersey

While the above case is a particularly egregious example of medical malpractice, it shows just how easy it is for a trusting patient to be put into the hands of a careless and negligent medical professional. Patients in New Jersey expect doctors to operate to the highest standards of safety, and when doctors fail to perform to those standards the results can be catastrophic for the patients.

Anybody who has been the victim of medical malpractice should contact a New Jersey medical malpractice attorney today. An experienced attorney can help clients hold negligent medical professionals accountable for any injuries or suffering they may have caused.

Keywords: spinal surgery, medical malpractice, New Jersey