Judge rules in favor of Connecticut dentist in $5M lawsuit: 5 insights

Dentists

A federal judge dismissed a case brought against Brian Perelmuter, DMD, after an inmate at Cheshire Correctional Institution filed a $5 million lawsuit against the dentist for punitive damages, according to the Connecticut Law Tribune.

Here are five insights:

1. Darnell Tatem, the inmate, claimed Dr. Perelmuter did not follow up after Mr. Tatem's diagnosis of a large mass around his left jawbone. In the lawsuit, Dr. Tatem claimed the mass progressed into an infection that required constant IV treatment for four weeks.

2. Dr. Perelmuter was forwarded Mr. Tatem's medical history 13 days after the inmate's diagnosis.

3. The judge ruled Mr. Tatem's suit did not prove standing. "To demonstrate standing, a plaintiff must allege an injury in fact that is fairly traceable to defendant's conduct and is likely to be redressed by judicial action," the judge said, according to Connecticut Law Tribune.

4. The judge went on to say Dr. Perelmuter did not participate in Mr. Tatem's initial diagnosis or follow-up. "[Mr. Tatem] merely asserts, without any factual support, that the diagnosis was forwarded to Dr. Perelmuter, and that Dr. Perelmuter never followed up. To sufficiently plead that some causal nexus exists between Dr. Perelemuter's actions and Mr. Tatem's injuries, Mr. Tatem must, at a bare minimum, make well-pleaded allegations that Dr. Perelmuter participated in Mr. Tatem's initial diagnosis or follow-up care," the judge said, according to Connecticut Law Tribune.

5. Dr. Perelmuter was employed through the University of Connecticut Health Center's Correctional Managed Health Care in Hartford. As of July 1, the division dissolved; however, dentists continue to treat inmates who visit the campus.

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