Nevada Must Repeal Dr. Desai’s Law
A lot of words have been used to describe Dr. Dipak Desai, whose greed may have exposed 40,000 Nevadans to Hepatitis and HIV. Let me add another word to the list: brilliant. Why brilliant? Because Dr. Desai didn’t just use the profits he made from reusing medical instruments to buy an 8,700 square foot mansion at the Red Rock Country Club. He also used those ill-gotten profits to buy a law that would protect him if any of the patients he harmed ever tried to sue him. Dr. Desai was the single largest individual financial contributor to the 2004 revisions to the Nevada medical malpractice laws. Among other things, the changes Desai paid for put limits upon the amount of money he’d ever have to pay patients he exposed to HIV or Hepatitis, and drastically shortened the amount of time his patients would have to sue him.
Using the money from patients you harmed to pass a law to protect you if those patients sue you – that’s brilliant. It’s also disgusting.
The Nevada Legislature now has the opportunity to repeal Dr. Desai’s Law by passing AB 495. Desai’s law sets the maximum amount of noneconomic damages a patient can recover from him at $350,000, which is just about 10% of what he paid for his Red Rock Mansion. AB 495 will let juries, and not Dr. Desai decide how much an injured patient deserves to recover from doctors who flagrantly disregard patient safety in order to turn a quick profit. AB 495 also prevents doctors like Desai from playing “hide the ball” with patients’ medical records until the statute of limitations expires so those patients can’t sue.
I urge the Nevada Legislature to pass AB 495 and undo the damage Dr. Desai did to Nevada’s medical malpractice laws.
I further urge all Nevadans to email the following Assemblymen and Assemblywomen to urge their support of AB 495:
Bernie Anderson, Chairman
Tick Segerblom, Vice Chair
Marilyn Dondero Loop
Barbara Buckley, Speaker
John Oceguera, Majority Leader (Assembly)
Stephen Horsford, Majority Leader (Senate)