In the continuing saga of the unnecessary cardiac stents that Dr. Mark Midei placed in people at St. Joseph Medical Center, St. Joseph now has sent letters to another 169 patients (in addition to the 369 who originally received letters) informing them that their stents were not necessary. That means that the total number of stent letters St. Joseph has sent now stands at 538.
In an excellent article today by Scott Graham, the Managing Editor / Health Care Reporter for the Baltimore Business Journal, Mr. Graham reported that St. Joseph continues to review Dr. Midei’s stent procedures between May 2007 and 2009 and expects more letters to be issued as the reviews progress. Interestingly, St. Joseph told Mr. Graham that the hospital has determined that only Dr. Midei was unnecessary implanting stents in people and that it was not a systemic problem involving other physicians. A copy of the article can be found here. Mr. Graham has written two other articles on the subject of the stents, which can be found here:
As I have said before, I believe this is only the tip of the iceberg. St. Joseph Medical Center already has found over 500 cases of unnecessary stents during only a two year time frame. When St. Joseph goes back several more years, I think the number of unnecessary stents will significantly exceed 1,000. In fact, I have a case from 2004 involving a mild blockage which Dr. Midei said was 80% blocked, so I know that Dr. Midei has been unnecessary stenting patients for triple the time-frame being looked at by St. Joe.
What is amazing to me is that people are supporting Dr. Midei. According to Mr. Graham’s articles, supporters have started a web site, www.markmidei.com and a Facebook fan page. While I am sure that Dr. Midei actually placed some stents that were medically necessary, this man unnecessary placed more than 500 people at risk for severe complications by placing stents they didn’t need; forced them to unnecessary take blood thinners for life; worried people for years that they have severe heart disease; took money out of people’s pockets for the co-pays that they are required to expend not only for the stent procedure for the medication for life; defrauded private insurance companies; defrauded Medicare; defrauded Medical Assistance, among other things.
I could understand supporting Dr. Midei if made a mistake in a few of cases. After all, all of us are human. But to put unnecessary cardiac stents in hundreds if not thousands of people is despicable. This man deserves no support.
In any event, my firm still is not advertising for these cases on television or in the newspaper, but I see such ads daily. What bugs me is that I believe the lawyers soliciting these cases actually are doing a disservice to their existing clients. As the number of claims against Dr. Midei increase, there is a likelihood that there will not be enough malpractice insurance coverage to fairly compensate all of the claimants. The more lawyers advertise to the public for these cases, the more claims there will be and the less compensation there will be for existing claimants. I doubt the law firms advertising for these cases are telling that to their clients!!!
My name is Andrew Slutkin. As an experienced Baltimore, Maryland medical malpractice lawyer, I have handled a number of medical malpractice cases involving cardiac issues. To see some of the cases I have handled, click here.