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Medical board accuses doctor of negligence after patient's death

Following the death of a patient, a California doctor is facing multiple accusations by the state medical board. He has been accused of gross negligence, numerous negligent acts and unprofessional conduct among other charges. The accusations were made after his patient died from complications surrounding the placement of a pacemaker.

According to the medical board's Department of Consumer Affairs, the licensed cardiologist did not follow proper procedures when treating the patient. Specifically, he did not properly insert the pacemaker in the patient who had a history of stroke. In addition to hospital staff negligence, he is also accused of lying under oath about the facts of the case.

The doctor had been treating the 78-year-old victim for nearly four years. She was admitted to the hospital complaining of chest pains and weakness. The doctor inserted the pacemaker to treat her heart failure. During the process, he allegedly committed several negligent acts that resulted in very heavy blood loss and artery bruising. She eventually went into hemorrhagic shock and died.

The doctor has not yet been found guilty of the charges. However, the medical board is reviewing the fatal case and the petition to revoke his medical license. Records of the medical board show that the complaint has been referred to the Attorney General's Office for prosecution. He faces the revocation or suspension of his license, as well his ability to supervise physician assistants. The doctor could also be put on probation or be required to pay medical expenses. The patient's daughter also brought a civil lawsuit against the doctor.

Source: The Desert Sun, "Palm Springs doctor accused by Ca. medical board," Victoria Pelham, May 8, 2013

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