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Mark Bello
Mark Bello
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Some Call Him The Biggest Drug Dealer in Indiana, and He is A Doctor


Dr. William Hedrick, the founder and president at the Centers for Pain Relief in Northern Indiana has been under investigation since 2012 for allegedly using unsafe drug practices when prescribing medication to his patients. There have been numerous complaints of him mixing uncomplimentary drugs and causing drug toxicity and even wrongful death in several patients. The state suggested some practices were more consistent with financial gain than patient benefit. Officials contend that he prescribed, even over-prescribed, medication without defining a legitimate diagnosis, used forgery to get patients medication and practiced deception to not only bilk the government out of money, but to also maneuver around the limits of the probation imposed on him by the state Medical Licensing Board. The state has identified at least 8 overdose deaths of patients who received prescriptions from Hedrick’s clinics between January 2013 and July 2014. In November 2014, the Indiana Medical Licensing Board ordered an emergency suspension of Dr. William P. Hedrick’s license to practice medicine, after criminal charges were filed. He had previously been on probation with state licensing authorities. A trial is set for March 2016.

Hedrick’s medical negligence has resulted in several lawsuits. One lawsuit was recently filed by the mother of Angela Renner. Angela Renner, a patient of Dr. Hedrick, was found dead in a motel room the morning of November 13, 2010 after filling her last Opana prescription. According to the lawsuit, 44-year-old Renner sought help from Hedrick for mild joint disease. The claim alleges that Hedrick never consulted a psychiatrist about what might have been going on with Renner. Medical imaging of her head, neck and back revealed no significant injuries beyond normal wear and tear associated with age. Yet, Hedrick prescribed two narcotic painkillers, two antidepressants, two muscle relaxers, one anti-anxiety medication and an anti-seizure drug. The lawsuit states that “by prescribing these opiates, and particularly Opana to Angela, a known alcoholic, (Hedrick) failed to meet the standard of care and wrongfully caused Angela’s death.” The lawsuit seeks $1.5 million, as well as punitive damages. Hedrick denies the allegations, claiming that Renner’s own conduct contributed to her death.

Although millions of people are seriously harmed each year from medical negligence, relatively few victims are able to bring malpractice liability suits. According to Tina Korty, general counsel for the Indiana Department of Insurance, malpractice claims take, on average, five years to resolve. First, an attorney must be chosen to chair the medical review panel. Second, three doctors are chosen for the panel, but finding doctors who don’t have a professional conflict takes months. Third, the evidence is heard, a decision is made whether the doctor in question breached standard of care. Victims can still file a lawsuit, but without a positive finding by the medical review panel, it is hard to prove negligence. The defendants also hire lawyers who make it extremely costly in time and money to bring lawsuits against their clients, regardless of how badly they have practiced medicine. On top of all this, tort reform makes it nearly impossible to even pursue a legitimate malpractice case.

There is a medical malpractice crisis in this country.  Despite this crisis, more and more states are enacting “tort reform” measures designed to make it difficult, if not impossible, to hold a negligent doctor accountable. When negligent behavior goes unpunished, bad actors will continue that behavior. It is a horrible fate to be a victim of negligence and insult upon injury to be victimized a second time because tort reform restricts citizens’ access to justice. When this happens, the taxpayers end up with the bill through Medicare, Medicaid, and assistance programs.

We trust juries to administer justice in criminal cases; they are called upon to make decisions about guilt or innocence, freedom or prison, even life or death. Yet, many politicians continue to accept campaign contributions from tort reform advocates and billion dollar corporations and support legislation that, essentially, takes serious cases away from citizen juries. Apparently, these politicians pretend that we, the people, are incapable of determining damage awards when someone is seriously injured or permanently disabled. But the court system belongs to the people not the politicians, not the corporations. Personal injury damages are an ultimate safety tool. Restricting damages in injury cases make us less safe.

Lawsuit Financial is a pro-justice lawsuit funding company that will continue to fight against tort reform until we eliminate all forms of this unconstitutional, corporate bailout.


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  1. jc says:
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    There he goes again, “millions of people are harmed every year through medical malpractice”. Notice how Mark never ever quotes a source. He just pulls these statistics out of thin air. When I quote the Ohio Depatment of Insurance which has repeatedly shown that 80% of the medical malpractice cases which are filed are frivolous, Mark won’t answer or won’t print my post.

  2. jc says:
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    I do agree with Mark Bello that there is a medical malpractice crisis in this country. Every year there are tens of thousands frivolous medical malpractice lawsuits filed in this country filed by grossly incompetent malpractice attorneys. Like the time I was sued for six years for a typographical mistake, or the time I was sued for ten years because a patient did not take an aspirin. This high plaintiff litigation failure rate is due to inadequate (none!) training given to plaintiff attorneys. The plaintiff attorney incompetance in this country is truely astounding!