CBS News put the Florida Board of Medicine in the spotlight with a September 12 report noting that 4 of the top 25 doctors with the most malpractice payouts in Florida have had their license revoked. All 4 of them, according to the report, were for offenses unrelated to poor medical care.
Physician Ernest Rehnke has the most malpractice payouts in Florida since 2000 with 11, the network reported, but disciplinary action by the medical board has yet to be implemented against Rehnke. Most recently, a patient of Rehnke’s died after emergency surgery for appendicitis. The patient’s husband, who graduated from medical school, noticed in the medical records after his wife’s death that his wife’s vitals were noticeably low after the surgery. He contended that Rehnke could have prevented her death if he had paid closer attention to his wife’s status prior to her death. According to the report, no lab tests or imaging studies were ordered to determine what was wrong.
In a letter to Dunphy a year after his wife’s death, the Florida medical board stated that they did review the case and found no basis to file complaint of wrongdoing by Rehnke. Nonetheless, Rehnke settled with Dunphy in a lawsuit for $250,000, the maximum Rehnke’s insurance company would pay for in a single claim.
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