MIAMI (CBS4) — A woman who says she was molested while being treated at a South Florida hospital has filed a lawsuit.
She wants North Shore Medical Center and a former physician’s assistant there to pay up. She says the assistant assaulted her during a medical exam. This civil suit comes as that physician’s assistant prepares for a criminal trial on similar charges in another case.
David Wand is charged with sexually assaulting at least one patient at the hospital.
Cynthia Hill who spoke exclusively with CBS4’s Natalia Zea by phone from Georgia says she was also one of his victims.
“I’m living in terror right now, ‘cause I don’t know this guy, I’m afraid that somebody might try to hurt me or something,” said Hill.
Hill was admitted to North Shore for several days in 2010 for blood pressure and heart problems. She says a few hours before she was scheduled to be transferred to another hospital Wand entered her room. She thought he was a doctor.
“He started examining me like he was checking my heart, and as I turned back over he had his mouth on my breast, and I said ‘my god what’s going on?’
Hill says Wand then forced her to touch him inappropriately. She says she was too stunned and scared to scream.“With him with his mouth on my breast I don’t know what he’s gonna do to me.”
Hill reported the incident to police three months later, after seeing on the news that Wand was arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a different patient.
Zea spoke with Hill’s attorney, Christopher Wadsworth. She asked, “Why did she wait, why didn’t she go to police right away?”
“She’s an older woman, she’s not a young girl and she just tried to put this behind her, much like a lot of victims do,” said Wadsworth.
Hill is now suing Wand, the doctor who employed him, and North Shore Medical Center.
“He should not have been allowed to roam the halls, he should not have been allowed to go into any patient’s room, hold himself out as a hospital employee or in this case, a doctor and perform physicals,” said Wadsworth.
Tenet Health System which runs North Shore released a statement saying in part, “At the time care was provided to Ms. Hill, North Shore Medical Center had no knowledge of allegations of inappropriate conduct by Mr. Wand. When allegations were received about Mr. Wand, he was restricted from hospital property and he no longer has privileges to practice at this hospital.”
The State Attorney’s office is prosecuting Wand for sexual battery on a different case. Hill hopes her lawsuit puts doctors on alert.
“Why did it have to happen at the hospital you know? I put my trust in doctors,” she said.
Wadsworth says North Shore’s lawyers are expected to depose her in the next couple of months. As for Wand, his criminal trial begins in December.
The doctor who is also named in the suit has not returned our calls for comment. Zea spoke with Wand’s defense attorney who wouldn’t comment on the lawsuit. He said only that he expects his client to be cleared in the criminal trial.