One Arizona doctor had a good ending to a horrible odyssey.
The urologist, Dr. Trabucco, was sued by an attorney for medical malpractice. Actually, this attorney did not really argue run-of-the-mill professional negligence. He argued the doctor “committed willful and malicious actions upon [the Plaintiff], eventually resulting in the [Plaintiff’s] death.” Underlying the claim was that a laparoscopic nephrectomy should only take 2 hours and the surgery took ~8 hours. This allegation converted a negligence claim into an intentional tort claim.
Dr. Trabucco inevitably moved back to Italy.
The plaintiff’s attorney was also involved in a bankruptcy action against the doctor.
The plaintiff’s attorney was characterized as persisting with the intentional and malicious claims brought in the bankruptcy action to have a better chance at deposing the doctor in the US. So, it was done for tactics.
The intentional and malicious claims took the complaint outside of Dr. Trabucco’s malpractice coverage. As to whether the carrier paid the bills anyway, I do not know.
There’s so much more.
There’s an ex-spouse involved. Bankruptcy proceedings. Complaints filed with the Board of Medicine. Packets of documents sent by “a paralegal” to a referring doctor. Allegations by the “paralegal” had contacted the police to search Dr. Trabucco’s property for a firearm. Release of non-public documents. Referrals drying up.
Allegedly, the “paralegal” wrote a letter to Dr. Trabucco’s parents claiming the doctor was asserting fictitious creditors in his bankruptcy. And that even if the bankruptcy charges were thrown out, perjury charges would be brought.
There’s so much more. It reads like the Book of Job. Just download: https://www.plainsite.org/dockets/download.html?id=208668901&z=18cf7f1b
The original plaintiff (wife of the deceased patient) against the doctor was not even sure why Dr. Trabucco was being sued.
Ultimately, the doctor prevailed. Then he bit back.
Jury awarded the doctor $8M.
What do you think?