Profession

AMA settles suit with former exec

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Oct. 10, 2005

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The American Medical Association settled a lawsuit with former Executive Vice President E. Ratcliffe Anderson Jr., MD, ending four years of litigation.

In 2001, Dr. Anderson filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit of more than $5 million against the AMA. His complaint said the AMA Board of Trustees had breached his contract when it stripped him of the power to hire or fire the AMA's general counsel.

At the time, the board called the lawsuit "frivolous" and vowed to "vigorously defend" against the claims. The board fired Dr. Anderson soon after he filed the lawsuit.

Last month, the AMA and Dr. Anderson announced the settlement and agreed on a joint statement. The statement read: "Prior to this settlement, Dr. Anderson's claim against three former trustees was voluntarily dismissed without a finding of wrongdoing and without payment of any compensation. That dismissal and this settlement in no way constitute an acknowledgement of any evidence of improper conduct by any party.

"Dr. Anderson remains steadfast in his belief as to the integrity of his actions as CEO of the AMA. The AMA remains steadfast in its belief as to the appropriateness of actions taken by its Board of Trustees.

"The parties have agreed and the court has ordered that the terms of the settlement shall remain confidential."

The AMA hired Dr. Anderson in 1998. He followed P. John Seward, MD, who resigned as EVP in the wake of the endorsement deal controversy with Sunbeam Corp. In January 2002, Michael D. Maves, MD, MBA, succeeded Dr. Anderson as executive vice president and chief executive officer.

Note: This item originally appeared at http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2005/10/10/prbf1010.htm.

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