Lisa Zenzen Baker, 1961-2003


Friday, November 11, 2005

Doctor settled earlier lawsuit

One of the doctors named in Lisa’s civil lawsuit against Samaritan Hospital settled another lawsuit just over a year ago, according to information posted on a state Health Department Web site.

The entry, dated Feb. 26, 2004, says a payment was made to settle a lawsuit filed against Dr. Rajinder Jain. The listing gives very little detail, saying only that the amount of the settlement was "average," and that it is the only settlement made by Jain in the past 10 years.

According to the posting, the department’s policy is not to list settlements unless there are at least three in a 10-year period. However, an exception is made if state officials "determine a settlement to be relevant to patient decision making."

A note on the page says "…(M)alpractice means a professional mistake that is a direct cause of injury or harm to the patient. A malpractice history has information about payments made within the last 10 years when a patient thought the doctor did a medical job poorly.

"Settlement of a claim may occur for a variety of reasons, which does not necessarily reflect negatively on the professional competence or conduct of the physician," the posting says. "A payment in settlement of a medical malpractice action or claim does not necessarily mean that a medical malpractice has occurred."

A search of an online archive of stories published in the Times Union over the past 19 years produced no indication that the filing of this claim was ever reported by the newspaper.