Surgery center linked to 2012 meningitis outbreak fights punitive damages claim – 5 insights

A dispute between Abingdon, Md.-based Box Hill Surgery Center and a deceased patient's estate is the last in a docket of more than 700 cases related to a deadly meningitis outbreak, Law360 reports. Here are five insights:

  1. Meghan Handy is seeking punitive damages for the death of her mother, Brenda Rozek. Ms. Rozek's died after receiving contaminated injections at the center.
  2. Ms. Handy alleges that Box Hill and Dr. Ritu Bhambhani, MD, committed fraud in filling out prescriptions for contaminated epidural painkillers made at New England Compounding Center in 2012. However, neither party intended to cause Ms. Rozek's death.
  3. Ms. Handy also claims Dr. Bhambhani failed to inform injected patients that the drugs were obtained using past Box Hill clinic patients' names and administered doses from the same vial to several patients.
  4. The surgery center argues that Ms. Handy must prove actual malice under Maryland law to collect the penalty award. She previously cited her complaints as part of a civil conspiracy and concerted activity, but a judge dismissed her allegations.
  5. The trial between Box Hill and Handy is set for April.

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