Op-Ed

Justice being served in my lawsuit against UK HealthCare? You be the judge

Herald-Leader file photo

As a physician and surgeon, I was trained to solve complex problems in the safest, most expedient and cost-effective way possible. We were taught to provide compassionate care and alleviate pain and suffering.

Law schools must be teaching the opposite.

As the plaintiff in a civil lawsuit over the last three and half years, I have gotten a good view of our legal system. It has been like opening the chest of a trauma patient and seeing my young resident assistant collapse to the floor beside me.

In our legal system, it’s not that money is no object — it’s that money is every object.

Have you ever paid an outrageous price for dinner at a fine restaurant and left feeling hungry and disappointed? Well, welcome to court.

Lawyers are trained to take something simple and make it complicated. They must be taking required courses in Obfuscate and Bloviate 101, then graduate to Prevaricate and Procrastinate 666.

They minor in accounting, so billable hours for both the plaintiff and the defendant pile up, and martial arts so they can wallet whip the little guy who doesn’t have time and money on their side.

All this infliction of pain and suffering is called justice. Since the 16th century, Lady Justice holding scales has been depicted wearing a blindfold. Like her I hate to see what’s happening, too.

If I sound like a sore loser, don’t be confused: I’m not giving up.

I believe I caught my superiors at UK HealthCare red-handed in questionable financial practices, so I filed a whistleblower lawsuit in Fayette Circuit Court when they came after me. Just Google “UK HealthCare and Kentucky Medical Services Foundation,” and read all about my case.

My attorney has been going head to head with UK’s general counsel, one of the greatest legal minds of the 14th century. He told me and my attorney: “Negotiate a cash settlement with UK. If you don’t, we are going to ruin your career.”

University officials placed false documents in my personnel file, created a false narrative about my 30-year career at UK, threatened or retaliated against faculty who spoke to support me, and blatantly ignored exculpatory evidence that refuted their claims. In other words, they “fixed” the disciplinary process to insure the desired outcome.

This is UK’s idea of due process?

“You will get your day in court” is the old adage. If that’s your future, I’ll see you there. You have my condolences.

Stay tuned to my case, which is on appeal, as I have more faith in you and the court of public opinion than the judges I’ve met so far.

Paul A Kearney, M.D., is a tenured professor of surgery in UK’s College of Medicine. He can be reached at pakear0p@uky.edu

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