Class action suit seeks nearly $1B from eClinicalWorks

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A class action lawsuit has been filed against eClinicalWorks, seeking nearly $1 billion in damages, claiming that the company’s product played a role in the misdiagnose of a cancer patient’s disease and, more largely, poses a risk to patient safety and provider care delivery.

The suit was filed by Kristina Tot, who is the administrator of the estate of Stjepan Tot. It demands a settlement of $999 million, contending the company failed in its fiduciary responsibility and was negligent in ensuring the safe operation of its product.

It charges that the eClinicalWorks records system failed to maintain his medical records “in a manner that maintained their integrity. In particular, he was unable to determine reliably when his first symptoms of cancer appeared in that his medical records failed to accurately display his medical history on progress notes.”

The company did not respond to a request for comment.

The suit charges that the software company failed in its fiduciary duty to maintain its products and ensure their reliability in supporting the delivery of medical care.

The suit charges that, “as a direct result of these deficiencies in (the) software, millions of patients have had their medical records compromised … they can no longer rely on the accuracy and veracity of their medical records.”

The suit noted that eClinicalWorks will pay the federal government $155 million to settle a False Claims Act lawsuit contending that its products are faulty and did not meet requirements that enable hospitals to achieve the meaningful use of electronic health records.

In the settlement on that case, eClinicalWorks denied any wrongdoing in agreeing to the terms, and that the claims "settled by the agreement are allegations only, and there has been no determination of liability." The company settled to "avoid the cost and uncertainty inherent in protracted litigation."

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