Court acts in eye center case

A District Court judge on Friday granted a temporary restraining order suspending the licenses of three doctors who worked at a Las Vegas eye surgery center where 30 patients say their procedures resulted in vision damage.

The court order prevents Drs. Stella Chou, Paul Cutarelli and Anamika Jain from practicing medicine in Nevada pending medical board disciplinary actions.

Dr. Vikas Jain, who is not licensed in Nevada and whose medical license was revoked in Ohio because of 22 medical malpractice complaints, was also named in the complaint filed by the state medical board and attorney general’s office. The order prevents the practice of medicine at Valley Eye Center, 2931 N. Tenaya Way, essentially stopping Jain from practicing there.

“The State Board of Medical Examiners and I are working to prevent unlicensed and unqualified physicians from harming the people of our state,” Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto said in a statement. “I filed this action to protect our citizens.”

Last month the medical board’s investigative committee filed malpractice complaints against Chou, Cutarelli and Anamika Jain for various violations of state law, including allowing Dr. Vikas Jain and another Valley Eye employee to give preoperative and postoperative care to patients even though they were unlicensed in Nevada.

The medical board’s 11-page complaint also said Valley Eye Center lacked a licensed ophthalmologist Mondays through Thursdays.

Anamika Jain, listed as owner of Valley Eye Center, specializes in rehabilitation medicine, according to the medical board’s Web site. However, she and her husband provided preoperative and postoperative care to patients until Chou and Cutarelli arrived Thursday afternoons, according to the medical board.

Chou and Cutarelli are listed as ophthalmologists, according to the medical board’s Web site.

Chou, who lives in Utah, and Cutarelli, a Colorado resident, each fly to Las Vegas on Thursday evenings, perform surgeries on Fridays and return to Utah on Saturday afternoons, records show.

Earlier this week, a class-action lawsuit claiming false advertising was filed in District Court against Vikas Jain, Anamika Jain and Chou. The lawsuit is expected to include dozens of plaintiffs.

When Vikas Jain’s license was revoked in Ohio, medical board officials said the physician showed a “pattern of incompetence, negligence and utter disregard for acting in the best interest of the patients.”

Jain’s treatment was also characterized as “very sloppy, shoddy, slash and dash, irresponsible style of taking care of people.”

Contact reporter Annette Wells at awells @reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0283.

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