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Q: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama ( Answered 4 out of 5 stars,   6 Comments )
Subject: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
Category: Health > Medicine
Asked by: jsc-ga
List Price: $5.00
Posted: 29 Oct 2002 14:05 PST
Expires: 28 Nov 2002 14:05 PST
Question ID: 92424
East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, Alabama is a public hospital.
Are there any public documents, accesible through the interent, that
show public complaints, negative comments, repremands or other legal action
against this institution?
Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
Answered By: brightshadow-ga on 29 Oct 2002 14:48 PST
Rated:4 out of 5 stars
The Better Business Bureau ( maintains a file on the East
Alabama Medical Center, who is a member of the BBB.

According to their information available online, only one complaint
has been filed against the hospital with the BBB in the last 3 years.
(Considering the number of people they must deal with, that's a pretty
good record!)

The East Alabama Medical Center is listed as having a satisfactory
record (they only rate businesses by "satisfactory" or "not
satisfactory", I believe) with them.

For filing a complaint yourself, you may do so with the Alabama State
Board of Medical Examiners, at:

Specific lists of complaints, including details, etc, are likely to be
handled by either the hospital itself or the local/state police

While criminal charges against a doctor or the hospital would be a
matter of public record, this information is unfortunately not made
available online to the public; you would have to contact the police
department for details on how to obtain copies of the legal
proceedings, criminal charges filed, etc.

Typically, a fee is imposed for obtaining copies of these documents,
but they are available to the public. Complaints made directly to the
hospital would be somewhat more difficult to get information on,
however; I expect that any given business would not openly discuss its
history of complaints without a subpoena for such information. :)

To answer your question specifically, however, other than the Better
Business Bureau, no means of accessing specific complaints is
available to the general public over the Internet. You can, however,
obtain copies of legal action and criminal charges filed by contacting
either the State Police in Alabama or the Police Department local to
the East Alabama Medical Center.

Hope this helps!


Relevant searches:
east alabama medical center complaints

Cited sources:

Request for Answer Clarification by jsc-ga on 30 Oct 2002 17:31 PST
I just want to thank each of you who took the time to help with my
question. Your help is very much appreciated. Google has another great

Clarification of Answer by brightshadow-ga on 30 Oct 2002 18:35 PST
[Cursory response to clarification request that should have been a
comment] :)

Glad to help -- glad to see that some other people came up with some
other alternatives that I hadn't found after half an hour of digging,
too. I seem to be short a law library..heh! :)
jsc-ga rated this answer:4 out of 5 stars
Thanks. Would more money get a more indepth search? This is my first time?

Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
From: brightshadow-ga on 29 Oct 2002 16:36 PST
I suppose that depends on who answers the question, really.. I
answered the question as it was posed to the best of my ability; the
only thing I left out was I didn't actually call the police department
out there to ask what procedures are necessary to obtain evidence of
criminal charges pressed versus the hospital in question, etc -- in
this case, the question appeared to be looking for specific
information accessible online, and the closest there is to that
(unless I overlooked something, but I did spend some time looking :)
would be the BBB; unfortunately, I think the BBB keeps the details and
nature of the complaints private, even if the company does not respond
or act in kind to resolve the complaint, etc.

The local law enforcement, in my opinion, would be the best way to
locate some concrete evidence of problems related to the hospital (or
a particular employee of that hospital,) and I don't think you even
need money to look over records, other than change for a copy machine
if you find something that you might need to refer to. :)
Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
From: fsw-ga on 29 Oct 2002 16:45 PST
Hello JSC,

You might be interested in survey results or complaint information
from the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations
(JCAHO). Most healthcare facilities strive to earn the highest
possible JCAHO accreditation, and much of the information is public.

JCAHO Quality Check 
(Enter the info for the hospital to determine its level of

JCAHO: Report a Complaint about a Health Care Organization 
(Scroll down to the bottom for release of complaint-related

JCAHO's Customer Service Department 
(630) 792-5800

Best wishes,
Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
From: pafalafa-ga on 30 Oct 2002 16:31 PST
I was curious as to whether more information was available, and indeed
there is.  The U.S. District Court for the District of Middle Alabama
provides electronic docket data to the PACER system at  A search on "East Alabama Medical
Center" shows the following cases in which the center shows up,
sometimes in the name of the case, sometimes elsewhere in the docket
(there were other cases as well, not listed here).

Since these cost money to access, I didn't look through the cases
themselves, but they're there for whosoever chooses to dig.  The
Medical Center might be the plaintiff or defendant or a third party in
these cases -- I can't tell without additional digging.

Researchers can sign up to the PACER system, but it involves a snail
mail step, so you won't have the instant access that has spoiled all
us internet brats.

Case Selection Page 
Case Number  Title  Filing 
Date  Last 
2:94cv00914 Patty v. Central AL Medical 07/18/94 08/09/94 
2:95cv01053 Auburn Medical Ctr. v. Peters 08/09/95 08/21/01 
2:97cv01275 Scott v. Woodley 08/25/97 10/21/97 
2:00cv01368 Bozeman v. Orum 10/10/00 08/05/02 
3:91cv00160 Williams v. Lee County, Alabama  02/19/91 09/09/96 
3:92cv00870 Huckaby v. East Alabama Medical 07/20/92 10/15/01 
3:95cv00018 Kelly v. East Alabama Medical 01/05/95 08/14/95 
3:95cv00278 Covington v. East Alabama Health  02/27/95 06/16/95 
3:95cv00747 Jefferson v. East Alabama Medical 06/02/95 07/21/95 
3:95cv00752 Jefferson v. East Alabama Medical 06/02/95 07/19/95 
3:95cv01055 Burney v. East Alabama Medical 08/10/95 09/25/96 
3:96cv00239 Cavender v. East Alabama Medical 02/12/96 12/31/96 
3:96cv00300 Edwards v. East Alabama Medical 02/22/96 11/10/97 
3:96cv00739 Hutchinson v. East Alabama Medical 05/02/96 05/30/96 
3:98cv00808 Mangrum v. Reddy 07/22/98 04/30/99 
3:98cv00896 Korsower v. Kappa Sigma, Inc. 08/14/98 02/06/01 
3:99cv00306 USA v. Cumbie-Gorham 03/29/99 10/01/02 
3:99cv00656 Donaldson v. East Alabama Medical 06/28/99 04/05/01 
3:99cv01001 Bragg v. T.F. Boyle 09/08/99 03/20/01 
3:00cv00012 Kirk v. East Alabama Medical 01/05/00 05/25/00 
3:01cv00460 Stevens v. East Alabama Health  04/16/01 05/14/01
Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
From: pafalafa-ga on 30 Oct 2002 17:27 PST
Actually, now that I've looked around a bit more, there is a fair
amount of information out there that is accessible.  For instance, see
this decision from the Alabama Supreme Court:

I think you're right -- setting a higher price for a search would
likely get you a chunk of additional information.
Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
From: jsc-ga on 30 Oct 2002 17:58 PST
Hi Pafalafa. I went to the US District Court's site. How did you do
the search to find that list? Thanks for your interest.
Subject: Re: public complaints against a hospital in Alabama
From: pafalafa-ga on 30 Oct 2002 19:26 PST
Sorry, should have been more explicit the first time around.  You can
register for PACER at  However, before
you do you should know that: it takes time, it's really cumbersome, it
costs money, and it doesn't always give you much info beyond case
names -- it's more of a pointer to information, rather than the actual
info itself.

Before you go down that road, try a Google search on "v East Alabama"
(include the quote marks) and see what pops up.  The "v" will help
zero in on court cases, and looking just for "East Alabama" will get
you several variations of the Medical Center's name (along with some
extraneous items, but what the hey!).

Good luck with your search.

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