MOUNT LAUREL, N.J., April 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- MedQuist Inc. (Nasdaq: MEDQ), a leading provider of medical transcription services, is pleased to announce entry of final judgment approving settlement and dismissing the consolidated medical transcriptionist class action commenced against the Company following disclosure of the results of the internal review of its historic billing practices in July 2004. MedQuist cares deeply about its workforce, and throughout this litigation the Company maintained that it has always correctly paid its medical transcriptionists, that it did nothing wrong, and that the allegations in the suit were completely meritless. The Court's action this week vindicates the Company's position: "[N]otwithstanding Plaintiffs' expansive discovery and investigative work, no evidence emerged to support their allegations that MedQuist had systematically underpaid its transcriptionists." The full text of the Court's Final Judgment and Opinion are available through the Company's Web site at www.MedQuist.com.
As originally reported by MedQuist in December 2004 and October 2005, certain individual medical transcriptionists commenced class action litigation against the Company alleging that MedQuist systematically and wrongfully underpaid medical transcriptionists. After it became clear that Plaintiffs could not prove the claims alleged against MedQuist, the parties reached a settlement, whereby MedQuist agreed to an injunction requiring it to implement certain measures to ensure transparency in medical transcription pay. MedQuist hopes that as a recognized leader in the medical transcription field, its agreement to increase transparency will pave the way for similar measures throughout the industry.
As part of the settlement, the Company also agreed to pay $1.5 million, approximately $1.1 million of which will be given to the Association for Healthcare Documentation Integrity (AHDI) to fund programs for the general benefit of medical transcriptionists and the medical transcription industry. The balance of the settlement funds will be paid to cover settlement administration costs and Plaintiffs' counsel's out-of-pocket expenses. Because there was no evidence to support Plaintiffs' allegations that transcriptionists were systematically underpaid, the settlement approved by the Court does not include any payment to the named Plaintiffs or the settlement class members, nor does the settlement include any payment for Plaintiffs' attorneys' fees. However, as part of the settlement, AHDI agreed to offer certain programs free of charge to class members as outlined in the settlement documentation. Additional information about these benefits is available through the settlement administrator at www.transcriptionistsettlement.com and/or AHDI at www.ahdionline.org.
Resolution of this litigation follows the Company's resolution of the previously disclosed Department of Justice and Securities and Exchange Commission investigations, the previously disclosed settlements reached in the South Broward customer class action and the Steiner shareholder class action, and dismissal with prejudice of the Kanter shareholder derivative class action. The Company has now resolved all class action litigation and governmental investigation matters arising from the internal review of its historic billing practices.
MedQuist is a leading provider of medical transcription services, and a leader in technology-enabled clinical documentation workflow. MedQuist's enterprise solutions -- including mobile voice capture devices, speech recognition, Web-based workflow platforms, and global network of medical editors -- help healthcare facilities improve patient care, increase physician satisfaction, and lower operational costs. For more information, please visit http://www.medquist.com.
"Safe Harbor" Statement under the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding MedQuist's business that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. Actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed or forecasted in forward-looking statements. As a result, forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they were made, and the Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
|SOURCE MedQuist Inc.|
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