Lisa Zenzen Baker, 1961-2003


Friday, September 14, 2012

Discovery continues

                            Demands for documents exchanged
                   in Samaritan Hospital vs. Web page

By David Baker
Posted Friday Sept. 14, 2012

The process known as paper discovery continues in Samaritan Hospital’s lawsuit against a web page that lists previously unreported medical-malpractice lawsuits.  At the end of August, a lawyer for the hospital served a ‘notice to produce’, asking for various documents, such as ones showing the number of hits to the page. That is a routine demand and will be complied with when a response is served next week.

But some of the demands the lawyer has made are clearly irrelevant to this case.  For example, he wants a copy of every item posted on the blog Answers for Lisa.

That blog has been up since 2004 - but it wasn’t until 2008 that stories about lawsuits filed against healthcare providers appeared on It.  Until then it consisted  mainly of a running account of the lawsuit against Samaritan Hospital over the death of my wife, Lisa.

The current lawsuit complains only about the domain name northeasthealthclaims and about the use on that site of a logo; it is not about the Answers for Lisa blog. This demand is for material that is irrelevant, and without a court order it will not be provided.

Furthermore - and most significantly - the hospital’s lawsuit on its face is not about the content of the northeasthealthclaims page - although clearly the real intent of this suit, with its claims for money damages, is an attempt to suppress information that compliant newspaper editors have ignored for the past 12 years.

As well as responding to this demand, I have filed my own notice to produce.  Among the documents I am asking for are: records of the amount Northeast Health, Inc. has paid for advertising in newspapers, television and radio in each year since 2003; a copy of every newsletter distributed by the company in that time; and the total budget for its internal and external public relations.

Northeast Health will almost certainly object to this demand, but it is claiming – without producing any evidence – that I have caused actual damage to its reputation, so this information is clearly relevant.

I am also asking for records showing the total amount that has been paid out to settle malpractice and negligence claims against any facility owned or operated by Northeast Health since 2003.

Meanwhile, I have received a transcript of my deposition in this case, which I will check for any incorrectly transcribed testimony and sign.