An emergency room physician charged that he was fired from Western Pennsylvania Hospital, Pittsburgh, for raising concerns about quality of care. The physician, David Lemonick, filed a whistleblower lawsuit in Common Pleas Court in Pittsburgh against the hospital and West Penn Allegheny Health System. In it, he alleged that hospital officials ignored his numerous complaints about delays in submitting blood samples, dangerously slow treatment of cardiac patients, understaffing and poor sanitation, among other areas of concern. Lemonick said in the suit that he was reprimanded for "disruptive behavior" and terminated without cause in November 2004 after about four years at the hospital. West Penn Allegheny spokesman Tom Chakurda said the issue was not a matter of quality but the physician's "inability to work effectively and professionally with his colleagues and support staff." Lemonick's attorney could not be reached for comment by deadline. -- by Cinda Becker
Pa. doctor says he was fired for raising safety concerns
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