A New South Wales physician has denied he gave medical recommendation a few company coronary heart verify program that led to a Melbourne lady’s loss of life, an inquest has heard.

Dr Doumit Saad’s digital signature was used to refer firm executives to get CT coronary heart scans, however he advised the Victorian Coroners Court docket he had no thought he was the referring physician, regardless of his title being on the medical studies he was paid to evaluation.

Underneath questioning, he was accused of fabricating his proof to “save his personal pores and skin”.

Dr Saad stated he would by no means let a affected person endure the invasive process, which used distinction dye, with out seeing them first, because the dangers included renal failure, anaphylactic reactions, and hurt to pregnancies.

Mom-of-two Peta Hickey died after struggling an allergic response throughout a coronary angiogram organised by her employer.

She was allergic to distinction dye used within the process and died eight days later in hospital.

The 43-year-old senior government had no medical historical past of cardiac issues when she had the scan on the suggestion of her employer, Programmed Expert Workforce.

Physician claims firm used his digital signature with out permission

The corporate supplied the guts verify after one in every of its executives had a cardiac arrest whereas working abroad in 2018.

It outsourced the company well being program to supplier Precedence Well being Care Options which, in flip, contracted JobFit, an organization providing medical assessments for enterprise, to evaluation the guts scans.

The referrals for the scan contained the signature of Dr Saad, a medical director employed by JobFit to evaluation the check outcomes.

Dr Saad stated Precedence Well being Care Options used his signature with out his data or settlement.

“I did not create any referrals for the chief,” he advised the inquest.

“I used to be by no means requested to create any referrals.”

A woman smiling at the camera.
Peta Hickey died after struggling an anaphylactic response to dye utilized in a CT scan.(



Physician did not verify who the referring doctor was

Dr Saad stated he had beforehand given Precedence Well being Care Options permission to make use of his digital signature for a “particular and restricted goal” for different work and had offered written permission for its use — one thing he stated was not completed on this event.

The inquest had beforehand heard allegations Dr Saad gave recommendation to each Programmed and Precedence Precedence Well being Care Options concerning the design of the cardiac evaluation and advised them {that a} pre-scan session was not required.

It was a suggestion he denied.

“I’d by no means refer a affected person to imaging that required distinction with out seeing them first,” he advised the courtroom.

‘I do not verify that element,’ physician says

Dr Saad was paid $5,000 a month to evaluation the scan outcomes, however he by no means observed he was listed because the referring physician, the inquest heard.

He stated he reviewed 30–40 studies a day and he would go straight to the conclusion.

Underneath questioning, Dr Saad stated he by no means checked who the referring physician was on a medical report.

“I do not verify that element, I’m going straight to the related findings,” he stated.

“That merely cannot be true,” stated Raph Azjensztat,  the lawyer for Ms Hickey’s household.  

“It is the reality … I evaluation about 150–200 information per week. I simply do not verify who the referring physician is,” Dr Saad replied.

Contradicting proof from different witnesses, Dr Saad repeatedly denied he was concerned in a 45-minute telephone hook-up with Precedence Care in October 2018 to present recommendation on how the well being program must be arrange and run.

Counsel helping the coroner Deborah Mandie put to the physician that he had contributed to the design of the cardiac evaluation on the decision.

“It didn’t occur,” he advised the inquest.

“There was no dialog,” he said once more beneath repeated questioning.

Dr Saad advised the inquest he was shocked to find his signature had been used, and solely discovered in 2020 when he was suggested to get authorized recommendation following Ms Hickey’s loss of life.

Physician ought to have stopped program, inquest advised

Paul Halley, the lawyer for Precedence Care, accused the physician of fabricating his proof.

Mr Halley stated Dr Saad knew he had an obligation as a health care provider “to cease this system in its tracks”, as he knew the exams weren’t acceptable for the executives when he began to obtain the scan outcomes.

Dr Saad admitted he had knowledgeable obligation to inform the executives {that a} CT scan, together with a coronary calcium rating, was not vital.

“You have got identified for an extended whereas that it is best to have completed that?” Mr Halley requested.

“Sure,” Dr Saad quietly conceded however denied he was mendacity to cowl his tracks.

It was argued that he put sufferers in danger by not correctly checking the main points of the studies and skipping to the conclusion.

Underneath hearth for his half in this system, the GP accepted he did not comply with good medical apply when he didn’t absolutely learn the studies and admitted he ought to have identified who the referring physician was.

It was additionally revealed Dr Saad referred a member of the family, towards the physician’s pointers, for a similar CT scan regardless of describing it as a “harmful” process.


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Associated Tales

Peta Hickey was supplied a CT scan by her employer. She did not survive it

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Extra on:
  • Melbourne
  • Medical Procedures
  • Coronary heart Illness
  • Courts and Trials
  • Dying and Dying
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