May 12, 2007
Kaiser hospital in Anaheim defies
The state attorney general wants to force Kaiser
Permanente Medical Center in Anaheim to release the names of two
patients who died while in the care of a pediatric cardiologist.
The hospital has not cooperated with the state
medical board's investigation of the doctor, identified only as "Dr.
Y," according to a petition filed this week in Orange County Superior
The state's investigation of "Dr. Y" started last
year after Kaiser Anaheim reviewed the doctor's conduct in the care of
20 patients, including the two who died. As a result of the hospital's
inquiry, the doctor agreed to a restriction of his pediatric cardiology
practice and, as required by law, Kaiser notified the state of the
disciplinary action. It's unclear if the physician continues to work at
In October, the state issued a subpoena for all
records pertaining to the discipline of "Dr. Y." In response, Kaiser
handed over 1,300 pages of documents related to the case, but redacted
patient names, citing confidentiality rules.
State medical board investigators say they need
the names of patients to contact their families and obtain coroner's
reports, according to the court filing. The hospital has said it won't
release the names unless the court orders them to. A hearing is set for
"In order to protect the patients' privacy, we
need a judge to decide whether or not the medical board really needs
those names," said Kaiser Permanente spokesman Jim Anderson. "If the
judge decides that, then obviously we'll comply."
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