Baylor St. Luke's exaggerated quality of heart transplant program, lawsuit alleges

The family of a Texas man who died from a failed heart transplant last year filed a lawsuit against Houston-based Baylor St. Luke's Medical Center, alleging the hospital exaggerated the quality of its heart transplant program to lure in patients, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Here are four things to know:

1. Sixty-four-year-old David Kveton underwent the heart transplant Jan. 25, 2017, and died from various complications Feb. 2, 2017.

2. After Mr. Kveton's death, his wife Judy received an anonymous letter that claimed Baylor St. Luke's allowed the surgeon who operated on her husband to keep practicing, despite warnings "he was not competent" and had "mishap, after mishap," according to the report.

3. Ms. Kveton and her children filed a lawsuit against the hospital Nov. 28, arguing hospital administrators should not have allowed the surgeon, Jeffrey Morgan, MD, to keep practicing after receiving complaints. The lawsuit cites the anonymous letter, an expert review of medical records and investigative reports from the Houston Chronicle and ProPublica.

"[The hospital] continued to actively misrepresent the quality of the program in an effort to drive patient volume and obtain the desired margin, luring patients like David Kveton into a deadly situation," the lawsuit reads.

4. Dr. Morgan's lawyer declined the Houston Chronicle's request for comment. Dr. Morgan lost his position as heart transplant program surgical director at Baylor St. Luke's in October but is still a faculty member at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. Baylor St. Luke's spokesperson Marilyn Gerry told the Houston Chronicle, "Our prayers remain with the Kveton family; however, we are unable to comment on litigation."

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