Abortion Doctor Target of Lawsuits, Complaints

Charolette Aiken, Karen Klinka Modified: April 17, 1992 at 12:00 am •  Published: April 17, 1992

Dr. Nareshkumar Gandalal Patel has had legal troubles before, and the state medical licensure board has heard several complaints involving his professional conduct.

Patel, 39, born in India, operates gynecology clinics specializing in abortions in Oklahoma City and Shawnee.

A witness testified in one case in Oklahoma County District Court that Patel performs as many as 20 abortions "on any given Saturday," at his Oklahoma City clinic. Medical records obtained from the state licensure board confirmed those numbers.

The woman, a medical assistant who worked at the Oklahoma City clinic and occasionally at the Shawnee clinic, also testified that Patel kept fetal tissue from completed abortions stored in both clinics until it was destroyed.

"We put them in boxes and date them. And he takes so many," said the witness, identified in court documents as medical assistant Nancy J. Standerfer.

He was ordered to pay $240,000 in damages after an Oklahoma County judge ruled in favor of a 15-year-old girl left permanently injured following an attempted abortion in June 1989.

The state medical board reprimanded Patel on June 9, 1990, "for a procedure done in an unprofessional manner in an unprofessional setting. " That reprimand was later overturned after he appealed to the state Supreme Court.

The high court let stand the board's admonition criticizing Patel for his failure to keep track of drugs and narcotics prescribed and dispensed at his clinics. He was also ordered to set up formal procedures to include job descriptions and qualifications of staff members working at the clinics.

Standerfer, the medical assistant who witnessed the 1989 abortion attempt on the 15-year-old girl, described how she saw Patel "pull out some tissue and take it in his hands. " Then the woman testified she heard Patel say, "'That's her small intestine,' and he put it all inside ... " The doctor then told his assistant to call an ambulance and the girl was rushed to Oklahoma Memorial Hospital. She later underwent emergency surgery for a perforated uterus, where a male fetus was found floating in blood inside her abdominal cavity.

Eventually, the girl's fallopian tubes, ovaries, and a portion of her colon were removed, and a temporary colostomy was performed.

In a separate incident, medical authorities said Patel was accused of abandoning a patient.

No action was taken in that case "because there was not enough evidence presented to make a finding on the claim," said Daniel Gamino, attorney for the Oklahoma State Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision.

Patel also is currently under investigation by the state board, Gamino said. He would not provide any further details.

A lawsuit filed by Terrell Dockery of Shawnee in April 1990 against Patel was dismissed by mutual agreement. Dockery said Patel wanted to induce labor in January 1989 about two weeks before her delivery date so he could go to India for a vacation.

She agreed, but she said he rushed through the delivery and neglected to suture a tear caused by the birth. She claimed she bled excessively and suffered an infection "because of him and his greed," and he was not available to help her.

She asked for $20,000 damages, and Patel filed a counterclaim for $355 he said she still owed him, records show. Patel produced hospital records showing he sutured the woman for a 1 1/2-centimeter (.6 inch) tear after delivery and again during the night when the suture line began bleeding. BIOG: NAME:

Archive ID: 500801

NewsOK.com has disabled the comments for this article.

Trending Now

Around the web

  1. 1
    Soldier's selfie sparks outrage
  2. 2
    PEOPLE: No more publishing unauthorized photos of celebs' kids
  3. 3
    Ben & Jerry's new invention could change ice cream forever
  4. 4
    Former CNN anchor has arm amputated after accident
  5. 5
    Chesapeake, Encana near settlements on Michigan collusion probe
+ show more