Alleged drug diversion lawsuits may be filed separately

MEDFORD, Ore.– A local law firm says it could file as many as 50 civil lawsuits against Asante, related to drug diversion allegations that police are still actively investigating.

Now, the firm is considering filing all of the cases individually, instead of grouping them together in a class-action lawsuit.

Attorney David deVilleneuve says filing each case individually could take more time overall.

But he said it would allow each case to be highlighted in front of a judge.

Sources tell NBC5 news that a nurse was diverting ICU patient’s pain medication and replacing it with non-sterile tap water.

In addition to the alleged deaths, we are hearing that there could be dozens of victims who suffered other adverse effects, potentially linked to the same case.

deVilleneuve believes Asante isn’t forthcoming about the details of what happened at the hospital.

“They are leaving a lot of information out,” deVilleneuve said, “there’s a lot of information they do have that they are not divulging to the general public. One of the reasons why I’m interested in this case is because I want to find out what the truth is.”

The investigation into alleged drug diversion at Asante has already sparked one multi-million dollar civil lawsuit, naming Asante and nurse Dani Marie Schofield as defendants.

Medford Police are still investigating, no criminal charges have been filed and no arrests have been made.

deVilleneuve said he believes Asante has already completed an internal investigation into the case and isn’t sharing information with the law firm.

We asked a New York-based Asante spokeswoman for comment on that, we haven’t heard back.

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NBC5 News reporter Derek Strom is from Renton, Washington. He recently graduated from the Edward R. Murrow College of Communications at Washington State University with a degree in Broadcast News and a minor in Sports Management. He played in the drumline with the WSU marching band. These days, he plays the guitar and piano. Derek is a devoted fan of the Mariners, Seahawks, and Kraken.
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