DuPage Medical Group has been accused of negligence in its indifference to patient safety amid sexual abuse, sexual assault, and battery accusations against obstetrician-gynecologist Vernon Cannon, M.D. of Bloomingdale, Illinois.
The lawsuit was filed on April 30, 2021, by Hurley McKenna & Mertz on behalf of an adult female patient known to the court as Jane Doe.
Jane Doe alleges Cannon began unconsented and unwelcomed physical and sexual contact during a May 25, 2018 colposcopy appointment at a DuPage Medical Group facility and that DuPage Medical Group negligently employed Cannon despite reports from numerous patients that he practiced while inebriated.
Hurley McKenna & Mertz, P.C. has filed five new misconduct lawsuits on behalf of patients of obstetrician-gynecologist Dr. Vernon Cannon and his former employer DuPage Medical Group.
DuPage Medical Group, now operating as Duly Health and Care, is accused of failing to supervise Dr. Cannon even though patients reported that Dr. Cannon was working under the influence of alcohol.
If you were a victim of Dr. Cannon or a witness to his misconduct at DuPage Medical Group, please contact us today.
On January 10, 2023, Hurley McKenna & Mertz, P.C., filed five separate misconduct lawsuits against obstetrician-gynecologist Dr. Vernon Cannon and his employer DuPage Medical Group, now operating under the name Duly Health and Care. Of the five new lawsuits HMM filed on January 10, three involve alleged intoxicated examinations, one alleges an inappropriate sexual relationship with a patient outside of examinations, and another accuses Dr. Cannon of bizarre behavior after a stillbirth.
The five new lawsuits are:
Stortz v. Cannon and DuPage Medical Group
O’Leary v. Cannon and DuPage Medical Group
McKay v. Cannon and DuPage Medical Group
Bretana v. Cannon and DuPage Medical Group
Jane Doe v. Cannon and DuPage Medical Group
These lawsuits follow a similarly egregious Complaint at Law HMM filed in January 2020 in the Cook County Circuit Court accusing Cannon of sexual assault and DuPage Medical Group with negligence. Along with an additional medical battery lawsuit against Dr. Cannon, all of the new complaints name the physician group as a Defendant for its alleged failures to adequately supervise a medical professional operating as their employee–a doctor who had been previously arrested for and charged with an alleged domestic battery.
An investigation conducted by Hurley McKenna & Mertz has revealed that Cannon was arrested on March 31, 2016, by Warrenville Police, who charged him with domestic battery involving alcohol. Cannon has also been the subject of multiple reports by patients to DuPage Medical Group alleging that Cannon practiced while intoxicated. Despite these reports, the suits all allege that DuPage Medical Group did nothing over a prolonged period to investigate the misconduct reports or discipline Dr. Cannon.
The lawsuits also allege that DuPage Medical Group negligently retained Cannon when it knew or should have known he examined patients while under the influence of alcohol and that DuPage Medical Group failed to adequately supervise Dr. Cannon during his interactions with female patients in light of these reports.
“We have grave concerns that a physician with domestic battery charges and reports by patients of being under the influence of alcohol on the job was able to continue his practice at DuPage Medical Group without any evidence of discipline or investigation,” according to Michael Mertz, Partner at Hurley McKenna & Mertz. “We intend to find out why DuPage Medical Group allowed this to occur.”
Among the evidence cited in the Complaints are patient surveys stating that Cannon “was under the influence of alcohol,” “slurring his words,” and had a “strong odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from his breath.” Another patient commented that Cannon slurred his words and lacked alertness, evident in the below summary taken from the patient surveys:
In spite of these patient reports, “we believe the evidence shows that DuPage Medical Group did nothing – and allowed Cannon to continue to practice medicine at their facilities,” according to Evan Smola, Partner at Hurley McKenna & Mertz. “In fact, after two of the reports, Cannon was disciplined, not for the complaints made by patients, but for not generating enough revenue for the practice group.” As explained by Evan Smola:
There are now seven lawsuits pending against Cannon, filed by seven separate women who suffered damage at the hands of a DuPage Medical Group physician. An obstetrician-gynecologist should be a medical professional above reproach, one with whom you must trust your most intimate information, not to mention your life and health. We believe the evidence will show that Cannon betrayed that trust, violating the sanctity of the doctor-patient relationship.
On Friday, January 6, 2023, the Circuit Court of Cook County ruled that patient surveys reflecting Cannon’s conduct could not be deemed “confidential” by DuPage Medical Group. The court denied DuPage Medical Group’s request to deem the patient complaints confidential, which would have prevented their disclosure to the public.
DuPage Medical Group adopted the name Duly Health and Care in September 2021, At the time of Cannon’s alleged misconduct, DuPage Medical Group was Illinois’ largest independent multispecialty physician group and operated 115 locations in and around DuPage County. Today, under the name Duly Health and Care, the medical entity advertises more than 150 Chicago area sites and over a thousand medical providers.
“We hope that these Complaints will lead to real change in the manner in which DuPage Medical Group and Duly Health and Care supervises its physicians,” according to Evan Smola. “Each of these women hopes to make positive change.”
Contact us today if you were a victim of misconduct while at a DuPage Medical Group/Duly Health and Care facility. We can help.
If you were a witness to Dr. Cannon’s misconduct at DuPage Medical Group, please contact HMM Partner Evan Smola at 312.602.1424 or email@example.com. Evan can advise you on how you can help the ongoing investigation of Cannon’s misconduct and DMG’s failure to protect patients.
Below, we provide a compilation of valuable resources and explanations for those looking to learn more about the pending cases.
Where Is DuPage Medical Group?
DuPage Medical Group is now Duly Health and Care. Duly Health and Care (F/K/A DuPage Medical Group or DMG) has a corporate headquarters in Downers Grove, Illinois. According to their website, the organization is the largest independent, multi-specialty physician-directed medical group in the Midwest. It has more than 900 primary care and specialty care physicians, and over 6,000 team members in over 150 locations.
The organization has roots throughout the midwest, which is why it must be held accountable for its lack of patient protection amid sexual abuse, sexual assault, and battery accusations.
What Is Negligence?
There are different types of negligence: negligent supervision, failure to institute adequate policies and procedures, failure to provide an effective “chain of command,” and negligent credentialing.
In the DuPage Medical Group case, Cannon’s victim alleges that DMG/Duly was negligent in several ways, including negligent supervision of Dr. Cannon and failure to draft and enforce appropriate policies to protect patients. DMG/Duly allegedly received complaints about Dr. Cannon’s misconduct yet disregarded them, failing to intervene with disciplinary actions to protect patients.
Victims are coming forward. Join the fight if you, too, are a victim of Dr. Cannon and the DuPage Medical Group.
Who Is Dr. Vernon T. Cannon?
Vernon T. Cannon, M.D. is a former DuPage Medical Group OB/GYN who practiced in Bartlett, Bloomingdale, Naperville, and Wheaton, Illinois. He also had hospital privileges at Northwestern Central DuPage Hospital in Winfield, Illinois. Cannon was a DuPage Medical Group employee from 2007-2019.
Was I Sexually Abused?
Incidents of sexual abuse in a medical setting are both traumatic for the victim and a problem in the United States. Often, victims of sexual abuse are left feeling baffled and alone. If a doctor sexually abused you, know that resources are available to help you find closure.
If you experienced anything that sounds like or is related to the examples below while a patient at DuPage Medical Group, you could be a victim of its alleged negligence and may be able to sue.
Consider the following examples before contacting an attorney:
- A doctor or employee makes unwanted physical contact.
- A doctor performed a procedure you didn’t agree to.
- A doctor or employee makes you feel uncomfortable in any way.
- Something that didn’t seem right happened to you, even if a doctor or employee reassured you that it was okay.
- A doctor or employee propositions you or seeks to engage in a non-professional or inappropriate relationship with you.
If you were not a patient at DuPage Medical Group but experienced abuse by a physician, you may also have grounds for a case, and we invite you to contact us.
When Did the DuPage Medical Group Lawsuit Begin?
A patient of Dr. Cannon’s alleges Cannon sexually abused her in May 2018. You can learn more about the details of this allegation here.
DuPage Medical Group asked the Circuit Court on August 3, 2021 to dismiss the complaint, alleging that they had no lawful obligation to oversee Cannon or protect the victim from Cannon’s wrongdoing. You can view Jane Doe’s response to that request here.
Nevertheless, records show that patients informed the Group that Dr. Cannon was intoxicated and slurred his words during patient visits in 2018 and 2019. Yet, Dr. Cannon was allowed to continue practicing at DuPage Medical Group in 2018 and 2019.
Almost a year later, on August 4, 2022, the Circuit Court of Cook County denied DuPage Medical Group’s motion to dismiss Jane Doe’s complaint and ruled that the case should move ahead.
How Can I Sue DuPage Medical Group?
To know whether your incident has legal grounds for filing a lawsuit against DuPage Medical Group, we encourage you to speak with an experienced attorney.
Skilled attorneys will not only be able to understand your background and apply the law to it, but they also have connections to industry professionals across many fields, such as healthcare. These experts can offer unique perspectives that may help your case.
Hurley McKenna & Mertz has represented thousands of sexual abuse victims and comprehends the emotional nature of reliving your experience. However, as highly challenging as it may be, the possibility of seeking rectitude and potentially recovering damages can aid in the closure process.
Our office encourages victims and witnesses to contact us immediately to help bring justice to Jane Doe and others in her shoes.
Hurley McKenna and Mertz’s Involvement in the DuPage Medical Group Lawsuit
“Sexual abuse in the doctor-patient setting violates the foundation of a relationship that must be built on trust,” explained Evan Smola, partner at Hurley McKenna & Mertz. “We allege that DuPage Medical Group, despite repeated reports of Dr. Cannon practicing while intoxicated, did nothing to investigate the reports or discipline Dr. Cannon. My client wants answers as to how this could happen at such a sophisticated practice. We would encourage anyone with any information about Dr. Cannon or DuPage Medical Group to come forward.”
You can listen to Evan’s interview on WBBM Newsradio here.
For a complimentary and personal consultation, contact us here.