The Columbian reported on January 7 that Deborah Reid, 42, and Karen Stransky, 64, died from the effects of narcotics allegedly overprescribed. The families of the deceased women, together with two other plaintiffs who survived, filed a medical negligence action with Clark County Superior Court.
It is alleged that defendants Kelly Bell, Penny Steers and Scott Pecora overprescribed potent narcotics while the plaintiffs were patients at the clinic, all the while ignoring key warnings signs of serious risks to their health, according to the lawsuit.
The two surviving plaintiffs—Tina Wright, 47, and Malvena Goetz, 59—suffered serious withdrawal complications from the narcotics they were allegedly overprescribed.
Medical Malpractice lawyers for the plaintiffs allege six additional overdose deaths associated with the clinic in 2007 and 2008. The Columbian reported that complaints that surfaced in early 2009 resulted in separate investigations undertaken by the Washington State Department of Health and the US Drug Enforcement Administration.
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The Columbian noted that in 2008 an Oregon teen died from the effects of smoking an oxycodone pill that had been prescribed to a Payette clinic patient. Following the revocation of the clinic's license to prescribe opioid drugs, hundreds of Payette patients sought narcotics from area hospitals and urgent care centers in what some called a public health crisis.
The two surviving plaintiffs in the medical negligence lawsuit are seeking unspecified damages. Meanwhile, plaintiff Reid died almost three years ago—January 8, 2008—allegedly from an overdose of opioids prescribed by the Payette clinic. Plaintiff Stransky died May 30, 2009, under allegedly similar circumstances.