HOSPITAL BOARD SUE D, <
AUCIvLAND, Map 13.
A civil action possessing some < extraordinary features, in that the statement of defence contains.. allegations against the professional , condupt,-of pla iutiff while he > held v. the position ;of ' medical superintendent of the Public Hospital at Maiigonui, was commenced at the Supreme Court before Mr Justice Cooper and jury of twelve. ; Plain-, fiff, £erey W, Menses, of Clyde, medical practitioner, sought tQreaver from the Bay of Igjands Hogpiial and-Oharit-ftble.A^ the sum of £Wl&§ general aamage'g, &d'£'3oo.aßspecial damages "for alleged wrongful .dismissal.; The. statement of claim set out that on October 4, 1913, the defendant board appointed plaintiff as, medical superintendent of the Public Hospital at Maugonui at a salary of 5150 per annum, with "house allowance and certain allowances for maternity cases arid right of private practice; The appointment ' was not for any definite tena and there ,was no clause in the contract as to notice required to terminate th© engagement. On December 4, 1917, the defendant "board, without making; any and without', giving him any x>p»ortui^ty of being previously heard in.Jbis^^ defence, notified plaintiff that $i|f .engagement,• would terminate at the 1 'expiration of three months. The said notice concluded with a paragraph, "This action has not been taken becj&ise of any want of skill on your part as modical superintendent of the hospital." Plaintiff alleged that the notification amounted to wrongful dismissal, inas'm.^ as £he- notice given was not reasonable notice in the circumstances of the case. , By<, means of. the dismissal plaintiff was forced to give up a growing private practice, and also to give up appointments as medical superintendent to Natives and as doctor to a medical club, which were also held by him while medical superintendent of the Mangonui Hospital, then; being not sufficient remuneration in private pfac-. tice alone in such a district to suppdrt a medical practitioner. The defence was a denial of all the allegations in the statement of claim, with the exception-of those relating to the' appointment of plaintiff as medical superintendent, to the term of appointment- and the manner of terminating the engagement.- For a,further defence it was contended-tnat plaintiff misconducted himself'in the service of the defendant board* by wilfi^lly disobeying orders of: the* board by charging tees for examination to persons desirous of enuring the hospital; by making exorbitant charges and so tending to render - his assistance unavailable in [.the district except for wealthy patients; by unreasonably refusing to work 'with the ■ district nurse at Kaeo, as from November 22, 1917; by demanding and receiving personal payment from hospital patients; by being offensive in his manner and using offensive and improper language to members of the board w.hen being spoken to about hospital matters ; by insisting on treating hospital patients as privato patients and charge ing for operations and attention to such patients;/by making false and mislead-, ing charges in writing to the defendant * aboard on November 22, 1917, against Nurse Bedford, an employee of the board; by insisting on guarantee of •■ fees before attending cases of extreme urgency; and by so conducting,himself . in the above manner as to arouse public indignation, as a result of which pub- . lie resolutions of protest from the Whangaroa County Council on November 28, 1917, and from a generakpublie meeting of residents of the county of Whangaroa, held on December 1, 1917, were sent to the board in regard to his and so rendered his services as medical man useless in,the hospital district.
Plaintiff was giving evidence when the Court adjourned. '.■■■
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Ashburton Guardian, Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9609, 14 May 1919
MOTE'S CLAIM Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9609, 14 May 1919
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