Lee Memorial Health System

A Broward County hospital system has filed a potential class-action lawsuit alleging that the state improperly recouped Medicaid money that had gone to hospitals for providing emergency care to undocumented immigrants.

The North Broward Hospital District filed the lawsuit last week in Leon County circuit court against the state Agency for Health Care Administration.

On his first day at work at Lee Memorial Hospital, 44 years ago, Jim Nathan wrote that he expected the job to last just a year, long enough to meet a requirement for his masters degree. Now, after more than four decades with Lee Health, including more than 30 years as its president and CEO, 70-year-old Nathan is stepping down from the job June 1.

Lee Memorial Health System is reducing the number of people who regularly use its emergency rooms. Treating regular ER visitors can be costly for the hospital, and the sign of a larger problem for the patient. We’ll explore a program targeting the underlying reasons that cause them to frequently visit the ER.

Supreme Court Ready To Hear Medical Malpractice, Other Major Cases

May 26, 2016
Stethoscope and gavel against a white backdrop.
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For legal junkies, the Florida Supreme Court will be the best show in town during a three-day period in June.

Justices are poised to hear arguments on a series of high-profile issues, including gambling, the death penalty, guns and medical malpractice, according to a schedule released Wednesday.

Arguments Set In Dispute Over Immigrant ER Care

Apr 27, 2016
Stethoscope and gavel against a white backdrop.
Wikimedia Commons

An appeals court will hear arguments June 7 in a long-running dispute between the state Agency for Health Care Administration and more than two-dozen hospitals about Medicaid payments for providing emergency care to undocumented immigrants.

The 1st District Court of Appeal scheduled the arguments Monday in the hospitals' challenge to a ruling last year by an administrative law judge, according to an online docket. The case has involved major hospital systems across the southern part of the state and the Tampa Bay area, such as Lee Memorial Health System, the North Broward Hospital District and hospitals that are part of the Tenet Healthcare system.

  Lee Memorial Health System is temporarily suspending its kidney transplant program at Gulf Coast Hospital in Fort Myers while working to restructure and hire new staff.  The move comes a year after the health system stopped performing kidney transplants with living donors following the death of a donor.

Supreme Court Urged To Take Up Claim Dispute

Sep 17, 2015

An appeals court Wednesday asked the Florida Supreme Court to take up a dispute about the constitutionality of a 2012 legislative move that limited fees paid to attorneys who represented a child severely injured at birth.

Note: Audio to come.

Lee Memorial Health System is preparing to build a hospital without beds. The company bought land in Estero about a decade ago. It was originally intended to be an 80-bed facility. But, the state denied its plans. Now, the plans have changed. 

Court Limits Fees on Birth-Injury Case

Jul 16, 2015
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An appeals court Wednesday upheld the constitutionality of a 2012 move by state lawmakers to limit fees paid to attorneys who represented a child severely injured at birth in a Southwest Florida hospital.

In a 2-1 ruling, a panel of the 4th District Court of Appeal said it was "sympathetic" to the arguments of the West Palm Beach-based law firm Searcy Denney Scarola Barnhart & Shipley, P.A., which spent years representing the child, Aaron Edwards, and his parents in a legal fight against Lee Memorial Health System and won a nearly $31 million jury verdict.

Steve Newborn

Nearly 1,000 workers at Lee Memorial Health System -- and about 2,000 volunteers -- have been given extra time to get a flu shot under a new rule, the Fort Myers News-Press reports. About 10 percent of Lee Memorial’s workforce missed the original Dec. 1 deadline. Employees can now be disciplined, even fired, if they don’t get the shot or approved for an exemption by Friday, the News-Press reports. 

Tightened security is becoming the new normal at many hospitals in Southwest Florida, according to the Fort Myers News-Press. New screening rules for visitors at Lee Memorial Hospital and Gulf Coast Medical Center mean the hospitals have turned away a tiny fraction of people in the past year who tried to enter the facilities.

Andrew West / Fort Myers News-Press

Although state and federal policies haven’t changed regarding drug compounding, some hospitals plan to take matters into their own hands after last year’s deadly fungal meningitis outbreak, the Fort Myers News-Press reports.

Fort Myers News-Press

A fight is brewing over the right to build a hospital for southern Lee County, Fort Myers News-Press reports. HMA was first to file an application with the state; Lee Memorial Health System filed on Wednesday.

Nurses complied with hand-washing rules much more often than doctors, according to a review by Lee Memorial Health System. Housekeeping outscored dietary.