False Positive HIV Tests Results Spur Illinois Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

April 9, 2011

After being falsely told that she tested positive for HIV, a Southern Illinois woman has filed a lawsuit against the doctor informing her of the false positive test results and the laboratory where the testing was performed. According to court documents, Ashley McCoy recently filed a lawsuit in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Dr. Michael E. Herrmann and Quest Diagnostics.

The medical malpractice lawsuit alleges that Quest Diagnostic wrongfully confirmed that McCoy had HIV after Dr. Herrmann ordered an HIV blood test for McCoy. According to the complaint, McCoy claims she suffered serious emotional distress after the blood testing agency and doctor confirmed that her test results for HIV were positive. The complaint alleges that Hermann and Quest Diagnostics issued slanderous written and oral statements that McCoy had HIV to other people at SLUCare Physicians of St. Louis University. Herrmann confirmed the test results and delivered the results to McCoy.

It was not until a re-test was performed at ARUP laboratory when employees at the lab determined that McCoy was in fact not HIV positive. After taking a similar case to court a Chicago medical malpractice lawyer noted that wrongful diagnosis is a severe form of medical malpractice that often goes unpunished.

McCoy is seeking a judgment of over $250,000 plus other costs. Her five count claim alleges that Quest Diagnostics is guilty of wrongful diagnosis. According to the lawsuit, Quest Diagnosis failed to correctly label its blood samples, did not provide her with the right tests, and published the wrong test results.

McCoy is seeking damages for serious emotional injury, severe emotional pain, and loss of reputation. She currently suffers from depression. McCoy is also seeking unspecified damages since she left her job so she could receive treatment for HIV. She continues to see a psychiatrist and a psychologist.

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