It's no secret that medical doctors deal with an onslaught of malpractice lawsuits brought against them by patients, but it's a rare case indeed when they are sued by the hospital for which they work.

Christus Health Southeast Texas has filed a breach of contract lawsuit against the Dr. Joseph Andris, claiming the good doctor defaulted on his recruitment and loan agreement with the hospital and still owes the care provider $238, 332.12.

The plaintiff's original petition was filed with the Jefferson County District Court on June 13. Judge Bob Wortham, 58th Judicial District, has been assigned to the case.

According to the suit, on Aug. 1, 2003, Andris entered into an agreement with the hospital. "As a part of the agreement, defendant executed a promissory note�.and despite plaintiff's full performance of all conditions and obligations of the agreement, defendant failed to make payments."

The agreement required Andris to obtain and maintain medical staff membership and admission credentials and privileges at the hospital, the suit said. He was paid a monthly income, plus given a large sum of money to meet the hospital's manning expectations.

"After allowing all offsets and credits due, if any, to the defendant under the terms of the said agreement, there remains due and owing the sum of $238, 332.12," the suit said.

Christus is suing for the remainder of the contract, plus interest and attorney fees. The hospital is represented by attorney Larry Simmons of the Germer Gertz law firm.

Case No. A179-489

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