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Man wins $60k suit after a doctor wrongly told him he had 6 months to live

- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 9, 2013

A Montana man has been awarded $60,000 in damages after a doctor wrongly told him he had terminal brain cancer and had only six months to live.

After hearing the devastating news, Mark Templin quit his job, sold his pickup truck, celebrated a "last" birthday, bought a prearranged funeral service and contemplated shooting himself, The Daily Mail reports.

U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy wrote that the distress he and his family suffered was caused by Dr. Patrick Morrow of Fort Harrison VA Medical Center's "negligent failure to meet the standard of care" in delivering the diagnosis in 2009, The Daily Mail reports.

Dr. Morrow had made a strong case for brain cancer with the VA's tumor board in 2009, even though an ophthalmologist suspected Mr. Templin had suffered a stroke a suggested more testing.

Dr. Morrow prescribed the patient two drugs to treat brain cancer and hospice care was ordered. However, Mr. Templin started feeling better and terminated hospice care before undergoing additional testing at Fort Harrison.

The doctor there told him a CT scan showed multiple small strokes, but no brain cancer. An MRI in December 2009 confirmed that it was a stroke that caused his symptoms earlier that year, The Daily Mail reports.

The judge decided to award $500 per day for the initial period of severe mental and emotional distress and $300 per day for the latter period until his new diagnosis, The Daily Mail reports.

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