Phila. hospital sues city couple over $16K-plus in allegedly unpaid medical bills

By Jon Campisi | Aug 9, 2013

Lawyers for Albert Einstein Medical Center have filed a civil suit against a Philadelphia

couple over claims that the husband owes more than $16,000 in unpaid medical care costs.

Attorney Lewis C. Trauffer, of the Philadelphia firm Tabas & Rosen, P.C., filed suit Aug. 7 in Common Pleas Court against Leon and Doreatha Russell, who reside in the city’s Logan section, over allegations that the couple has an outstanding healthcare tab of $16,848.75 for a week’s worth of treatment last April.

The complaint says that the medical care given to Leon Russell was “commensurate with the condition of [Leon],” and was necessary for the man’s health and welfare.

At the time of the plaintiff’s treatment, the suit states, “implied, constructive and oral contracts arose” between Leon Russell and the plaintiff regarding the terms by which the defendant became obligated to pay the healthcare institution.

Nevertheless, the lawsuit alleges, Leon Russell has continued to refuse to pay the balance of the money due to Einstein.

In addition to the outstanding charges, the hospital also seeks 6 percent interest per annum from the date of discharge to the date of judgment, plus both record and non-record costs.

The lawsuit names Russell’s spouse as a co-defendant because the man is indigent, and Doreatha is financially able to pay the outstanding medical bill.

The record shows that Leon Russell was hospitalized from April 5 to 11, 2012, although the specifics with regard to his medical condition or conditions are not directly spelled out in the lawsuit.

An attached billing statement, however, shows that Leon spent time in the hospital’s emergency room, intensive care unit, and recovery room.

The man also had a variety of medical tests done, everything from blood work and X-rays to ultrasounds.

The lawsuit contains a verification statement signed by Veronica Ballay, the billing supervisor for the hospital.

The matter has been scheduled for arbitration in late April of next year.

The case ID number is 130800404. 

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