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Cartwright v. Delaware Integrative Medicine, LLC

Superior Court of Delaware

December 4, 2018

TIFFANY CARTWRIGHT, ET AL., Plaintiffs,
v.
DELAWARE INTEGRATIVE MEDICINE, LLC, ET AL., Defendants.

          Submitted: August 8, 2018

         Upon Consideration of the Motion of Beebe Medical Center to Quash Subpoena

          Timothy E. Lengkeek, Esq., Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor, LLP, Attorney for Plaintiff, Tiffany Cartwright.

          Bradley J. Goewert, Esq., Lorenza A. Wolhar, Esq., Marshall Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin, Attorneys for Defendant, Beebe Medical Center.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION

          BUTLER, J.

         INTRODUCTION

         In this matter, the Court will consider a question in a discrete area of the law. It came to the Court by way of a discovery dispute.

         FACTS AND PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         Plaintiff filed suit alleging medical negligence by Dr. Henry Childers, M.D. At one time in the past, Dr. Childers had privileges at Beebe Hospital.[1]

         Dr. Childers has been deposed in this litigation. During his deposition, he testified that he was previously employed by Beebe, but left in 2012 as a result of an injury to his finger.[2] He testified that he had never been subject to any attempts to suspend or revoke his medical license.[3]

         Subsequent to his deposition, Plaintiffs counsel learned that the Delaware Board of Medical Practice had filed a Complaint for Revocation and Motion for Emergency Suspension of Childers' medical license.[4] The complaint by the Board recited that Dr. Childers' privileges had been suspended by Beebe in June, 2012, thus calling into question the credibility of Dr. Childers' deposition testimony.[5]

         Plaintiffs counsel then caused a subpoena to issue to Beebe Hospital, seeking information concerning Dr. Childers' departure from Beebe. In response, Beebe produced, inter alia, a Privilege Log, identifying certain documents that it claimed were privileged from disclosure.[6] Three of these documents require a ruling from the Court.

         The first is identified as "Letter to Dr. Childers dated June 5, 2012 from V.P. Human Resources re terms and conditions of employment."[7] A second document is identified as "Letter to Dr. Childers dated May 18, 2012 re privileges."[8] Finally, there is what is identified as a "Subpoena, dated June 19, 2012."[9]

         While this matter was under consideration by the Court, Beebe provided the full documents to the Court for in camera review and clarified that its claim of privilege from disclosure of the June 5th letter concerning Dr. Childers' employment was a claim that the document was privileged "per the express ...


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