Judge denies Allscripts motion to dismiss doctor’s class action

Posted on: April 10th, 2013 by Steve Larson
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Pharmacy workerMiami-Dade County Circuit Court Judge John W. Thornton denied Allscripts Healthcare Solutions’ motion to dismiss a class action lawsuit filed against it by physicians who use its MyWay electronic health records (EHR) system.  Chicago-based Allscripts (NASDAQ: MDRX) was hit with a lawsuit on December 20 by Panama City-based Pain Clinic of Northwest FL, on behalf of about 5,000 small group physicians who used MyWay until the company announced late last year that it would stop supporting the system. The clinic claims that the EHR did not work as intended, and that the forced switch to another records system carries substantial costs for medical practices.

Allscripts announced in October that it would discontinue MyWay and transition its users to the EHR Pro software program for free. This program was previously offered only to large medical groups. The complaint alleges that making the switch required significant staff training and costs and the program wasn’t designed for smaller practices, but Allscripts charged thousands of dollars to practices who wanted to leave them and take their medical records with them.

Instead of responding directly to the allegations in the complaint, Allscripts filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit and compel arbitration between it and the doctors.

However, the judge ruled that Allscripts wasn’t a party to the contract that called for arbitration to settle a dispute, so the lawsuit should continue. The February 27 ruling gave Allscripts 20 days to answer the complaint.