Orthopedic surgeon sues health system for $24.7M over termination


Paul Mason, MD, is suing Warsaw, N.Y.-based Wyoming County Community Health System over his termination more than a year ago, The Buffalo News reported March 1.

Dr. Mason's lawsuit, filed Feb. 15 in Erie County (N.Y.) Court, targets the health system, Wyoming County and members of the Wyoming County board of supervisors. Dr. Mason had worked with the health system since 2014. In 2017, he and the hospital agreed to give him full-time surgical and clinical services, along with the title of chief medical officer.

He later formed Buffalo Bone and Joint in Warsaw so he could contract for expanded services at Wyoming County Community Health System, the report said. The lawsuit also alleges the health system's late CEO Joseph McTernan didn't regularly work with Dr. Mason and publicly called out the contract with Buffalo Bone and Joint, saying he thought it favored the physician.

In 2020, a different physician allegedly performed operations in "what appeared to be an intoxicated or impaired condition," and Dr. Mason reported the situation to the state Office of Professional Medical Conduct. This increased retaliation against him, the lawsuit alleges. In December 2021, the hospital claimed Dr. Mason's practice breached service agreements. 

Dr. Mason was terminated in February 2022 and eventually contracted with Bertrand Chaffee Hospital in Springville, N.Y. 

Dr. Mason's lawsuit is seeking $24.7 million. The Wyoming County health system didn't provide comment to The Buffalo News.

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