Hancock Medical adds to lawsuit
By Dwayne Bremer
Apr 1, 2014, 17:43
Attorneys for Hancock Medical Center have asked a federal judge to remove an arbitration clause with the hospital's former management company before a federal lawsuit goes forward.
Last week, HMC filed a motion for partial summary judgment in its lawsuit against Quorum Health Resources.
The county-owned hospital filed suit against Quorum in U.S. District Court in Gulfport in February, claiming years of Quorum's mismanagement cost the hospital millions of dollars in financial damages.
Quorum's contract with the county was terminated on Sept. 3, 2013, but a few months later, the company submitted a notice of claim to the American Health Lawyers Association Dispute Resolution Service claiming the termination was a breach of Quorum's contract with the county.
HMC officials have said in previous court filings that Quorum was the party which breached its contract because of negligence and breaches of fiduciary duties.
"The hospital and the community will be harmed if the arbitration proceeds without the procedural and due process safeguards that litigation this court provides," the motion said.
Additionally, the motion said, the arbitration clause is not enforceable under Mississippi law.
The motion was filed on March 26. Quorum has yet to respond.
Shortly after filing the lawsuit in February, HMC entered into a new, two-year management contract with Ochsner Health Systems of Louisiana.
HMC is owned by Hancock County and operated by a seven-member hospital board whose members are appointed by the Hancock County Board of Supervisors. The suit against Quorum seeks to recover monetary damages and attorneys fees.