Jury: HMO liable for $24M in Vegas hep C outbreak

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Updated: 4/04/2013 6:47 pm

LAS VEGAS (AP) — A Nevada jury says the state's largest health management organization is liable for $24 million in compensatory damages to three plaintiffs in a negligence lawsuit stemming from a Las Vegas hepatitis C outbreak that became public in 2008.

A plaintiffs' lawyer said Thursday he'll ask the jury on Friday to hold Health Plan of Nevada and Sierra Health Services responsible for another $1 billion in punitive damages for what he calls "reckless disregard" for patients' health.

Attorneys for the two companies issued a statement saying they're disappointed but not surprised by Thursday's civil trial verdict in Clark County District Court.

They argue they were blocked from showing that company officials didn't know a doctor in their network was endangering patients with unsafe endoscopy practices at outpatient clinics in Las Vegas.

 

©2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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