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Subject: Employment Law - Race Discrimination

CLEVELAND - A Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court jury, on July 2, 2002, awarded $600,000 in damages, plus attorneys' fees amounting to $90,000, to Robert Griffin, 38, a former manager at several Denny's Restaurant franchises in Medina County, Ohio. There was testimony that the franchise owner had used racial slurs and provided payments for employees to slash Griffin's automobile tires and make false reports of sexual harassment against him. Other testimony alleged that the franchise's management rehired employees discharged by Griffin for using racial slurs. A unanimous jury of eight persons arrived at the verdict in favor of Mr. Griffin in approximately two hours and fifteen minutes, following a five-day trial. The Denny's restaurant chain was not a defendant in the lawsuit. Source: The Plain Dealer, 7-10-02.

Subject: Medical Malpractice

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- As many as 195,000 people a year could be dying in U.S. hospitals because of easily prevented errors, a company said on July 27, 2004, in an estimate that doubles previous figures.

Lakewood, Colorado-based HealthGrades Inc. said it data covers all 50 states and is more up-to-date than a 1999 study from the Institute of Medicine that said 98,000 people a year die from medical errors.

"The HealthGrades study shows that the IOM report may have underestimated the number of deaths due to medical errors, and, moreover, that there is little evidence that patient safety has improved in the last five years," said Dr. Samantha Collier, vice president of medical affairs at the company. Source: CNN.com/2004/HEALTH/07/28/health.mistakes.reut/index.html .

CHICAGO (Reuters) -- Death or injury is 10 times more likely in surgeries performed in U.S. doctors' offices as compared to outpatient clinics according to a recent survey.

The report published in the September Issue of The Archives of Surgery was based on an analysis of adverse incident reports filed with State of Florida officials for both ambulatory surgery centers and physician's offices over a one-year period from 2001 to 2002.

Researchers found that 66.0 adverse events occurred per 100,000 procedures performed in offices compared to 5.3 problems per 100,000 procedures performed in outpatient surgical centers. The death rate per 100,000 procedures was 9.2 in offices and 0.78 in the centers.

"In this review...there was an approximately ten-fold increased risk of adverse incidents and death in the office setting," the study concluded.

Such in-office procedures ranging from needle biopsies and endoscopies to plastic surgery and even tonsillectomy, have become more common in recent years, the study said. Only 22 states have laws or regulations covering office surgery. Source: CNN.com/health 9-8-03.

CHICAGO -- A Chicago Tribune investigation analyzed 3 million state and federal records in order to conclude that poorly trained or overworked nurses in the nation's hospitals are responsible, since 1995, for at least 1,720 patient deaths and 9,548 injuries. Records examined included medication overdoses, delay of vital patient care and the performance of medical procedures by nurses who had not been properly trained. At least 119 patients were said to have died as the result of care by nurses aides, who are unlicensed and unregulated. Source: Daily Legal News (Cleveland, OH), 9-12-00, Vol. 113, No. 182, Pg. 16.

For more information, please contact Attorney Charles S. Butler at (216) 691-9959.

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Charles S. Butler
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(216) 691-9959
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