Indiana physician sues health system alleging breach of contract 

Orthopedic surgeon Greg Hardin, MD, is suing Mishawaka, Ind.-based Franciscan Alliance, for allegedly directing patients away from his practice, the Center for Orthopaedic Surgery & Sports Medicine, Inside Indiana Business reported June 24.

Dr. Hardin alleges that while he and the health system were joint venture partners in the South Indy MRI & Rehab Services and South Emerson Surgery Center, Franciscan Alliance refused to pay operating expenses and prematurely ended his practice's office lease. 

According to the report, the health systems' ended his lease to make space for another medical practice doing business with an orthopedic practice. Additionally, Dr. Hardin alleges in the complaint that the health system also limited or redirected patient referrals from his practice to "undermine" him. 

Dr. Hardin alleges the ASC venture experienced a nearly 80% decrease in patient volumes and revenues because of the health system's behavior. The complaint also alleges both joint ventures are now unable to operate profitably and have become insolvent.

Franciscan has entered into a new joint venture with an orthopedic practice. According to the report, Franciscan has refused to allow the MRI venture with Hardin into its Epic system for record documentation.

In the suit, Dr. Hardin claims breach of fiduciary duties, dereliction and waste, intentional interference and breach of contract. Dr. Hardin is seeking a jury trial and unspecified damages.

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