July 8, 2019

Around the nation: American Pain Society declares bankruptcy as it battles opioid-related lawsuits

Daily Briefing

    The American Pain Society recently filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and decided to cease operations due to legal costs stemming from opioid-related lawsuits, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Illinois, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Texas.

    • Illinois: The American Pain Society recently filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and decided to cease operations due to legal costs stemming from opioid-related lawsuits. The society was named as a defendant in multiple lawsuits filed by state and city governments over the U.S. opioid epidemic. William Maixner, the society's president, said the legal costs created "the perfect storm," adding that it is "now pointless to continue operations, just to defend against superfluous lawsuits." Maixner continued, "Our resources are being diverted to paying staff to comply with subpoenas and other requests for information and for payment of legal fees" (Paavola, Becker's Hospital Review, 7/1).

    • Pennsylvania: The city of Pittsburgh has declared May 16 "Jaja Day" to honor UPMC Magee-Womens Hospital doctor Carey Andrew-Jaja. Andrew-Jaja is known as "The Singing Doctor" at the hospital for his tradition of singing to every newborn baby he delivers. Andrew-Jaja said, "There's a joy when people perform this way to honor the baby, the parents," adding, "And I'm happy that the city recognized that" (Tang/Cirillo, "Good Morning America," ABC, 7/1).

    • Tennessee/Texas: HCA Healthcare last Monday announced that it has purchased 24 MedSpring urgent care centers from dialysis clinic operator Fresenius Medical Care. HCA plans to rename the centers, which are located in Austin, Dallas, and Houston, to CareNow Urgent Care. The purchase gives HCA 160 urgent care facilities nationwide, HCA said in a release (O'Brien, HealthLeaders Media, 7/1; HCA Healthcare release, 7/1).
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