Via The Scoop Blog of The Dallas Morning News: Attorneys for Ebola nurse Nina Pham, Texas Health Resources face off in court; judge issues temporary restraining order. Excerpt:
A state district judge Monday momentarily halted efforts by Texas Health Resources to seek a worker’s compensation claim for Ebola nurse Nina Pham.
Attorneys for Pham say THR’s pursuit of a worker’s compensation claim is intended to kill her lawsuit against the healthcare company. But THR argues that the case should be resolved with the worker’s compensation claim and that the lawsuit should be dismissed.
Pham contracted the deadly disease in October at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, which is owned by THR, while caring for the first U.S. patient diagnosed with the deadly disease. That patient, Thomas Eric Duncan, contracted Ebola in his native Liberia and died at Presbyterian.
State District Judge Martin Hoffman issued a temporary restraining order after a brief hearing. A full hearing where witnesses will likely be called will be held within 14 days. No date has been set.
At issue is whether Hoffman’s court or the court that would hear the worker’s compensation claim has jurisdiction. The worker’s compensation court would have to determine whether Pham was an employee of Presbyterian, THR or both.
Pham’s attorneys Brent Walker and Charla Aldous said that THR waited until after Pham’s lawsuit was filed to pursue worker’s compensation.
Aldous told Hoffman that THR pursuing the worker’s compensation claim “so transparently gamesmanship” and said that “the truth” needs to come from the witness stand during a hearing.