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Garcias sue doctors for Mayor Marlon’s death
By: Lianne Llesol | Published Wednesday, December 16, 2020
The Garcia family sued two doctors of the Chong Hua Hospital for medical negligence that led to Barili Mayor Marlon Garcia’s death. (Junjie Mendoza)

The family of the late Barili Mayor Marlon Garcia filed a criminal complaint against two doctors of Chong Hua Hospital (CHH) for medical negligence that led to the mayor’s death.

The complaint, filed on December 15, was based on the findings of US-based Dr. Ravi Venkata Durvasula who reviewed the medical records, physician notes, and other records of the late mayor’s condition.

In a press conference Tuesday, December 16, Atty. Joan Largo, counsel of the Garcia family, said that Durvasula’s findings showed that the doctors and hospitals “breached the proper standard care and treatment of Marlon.” 

“Highly questionable and unnecessary treatments, and exaggerated laboratory results were employed which led to the death of patient Marlon Garcia,” she added.

Deputy Speaker Pablo John Garcia hoped that their family’s action would inspire those who have experienced the same treatment to assert their rights. 

Governor Gwendolyn Garcia expressed that the grief they have experienced with the death of Mayor Marlon and another brother, Dumanjug Mayor Nelson Garcia, should not be experienced by other Cebuanos.

“This will not bring back the lives of Marlon and Nelson. But, as I speak now as the governor of the Province of Cebu, we are hoping that this case will serve as a warning to others that there will be less people who’d have to needlessly die because of criminal negligence and criminal greed,” she said.

“Dili na mapun-an ang mangamatay nga Sugbuanon tungod sa pagpabaya, o kayha gituyo nga pagpabaya, kay dunay giapas - dili ang kinabuhi sa akong mga igsuon kun dili ang kwarta nga ilang makita,” she added.

Falsification of document

Apart from this, the Garcias are also set to file another criminal case against responsible CHH officers for estafa. 

The family said CHH falsified documents to make fraudulent claims for reimbursements from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth) for the death of the Garcia brothers.

Cebu CFI Cooperative Chairman Atty. Winston Garcia revealed that the only time the hospital reached out to the family was to have Mayor Marlon’s widow sign a document that showed a total of 16 doctors attended to the late mayor.

“There were no 16 physicians who attended to my brother and that is proven by the medical records submitted,” he said, adding that the document is now being used as basis for the estafa case.

Aware of the different fraudulent schemes related to PhilHealth Covid-19 funds, Governor Garcia advised Mayor Marlon’s wife and eldest son to refrain from signing of the falsified document.

“We will not be party to that fraud,” she said.

With these issues and Dr. Durvasula’s findings, Atty. Winston has permanently removed CHH from the list of accredited hospitals of the CFI and urged its members to refrain from using the hospital’s services.

“We do not want you to suffer the same fate as we have suffered. Di man mi makapugong kung muadto gyud mo ug Chong Hua, but for us, with the findings, this has become the hospital of death. Daghan na mi nadawat nga reklamo parte ani na hospital. Gi-una nila di ang interes sa pasyente kung di ang pagpangwarta,” he said.

The unsuccessful treatment given to both Mayors Marlon and Nelson reached more than P8 million, he added.

The Garcias will also file a complaint against two doctors and CHH for the death of Mayor Nelson, who died five days before Mayor Marlon.

“They are just waiting for the final report on the finding of their medical experts looking into the death of the late Nelson Garcia before they take action on his death,” Largo said. (Lianne Llesol)