US & Canada

Johns Hopkins Hospital pays out $190m over doctor tapes

Dr Nikita Levy, undated handout image Image copyright other
Image caption Dr Nikita Levy killed himself shortly after he was fired from the hospital

Johns Hopkins Hospital in the US state of Maryland has agreed to pay $190m (£111m) after some 8,000 women joined a legal case claiming a gynaecologist had secretly recorded them.

Dr Nikita Levy, who killed himself last year, reportedly used cameras in pens and key fobs to tape patients.

Lawyer Jonathan Schochor said all of the women had been "brutalised" and described it as a "betrayal".

The settlement is believed to be the largest of its kind in US history.

The hospital said in a statement that one individual "does not define Johns Hopkins".

"It is our hope that this settlement, and findings by law enforcement that images were not shared, helps those affected achieve a measure of closure," the statement said.

Levy's misconduct was first brought to light by a colleague, who saw a pen camera around his neck.

Authorities later discovered more than 1,200 images and videos clips of patients on hard drives in Levy's home.

The women also alleged that Levy ordered an "excessive number" of invasive exams and engaged in inappropriate physical contact.

An investigation later determined Levy participated in the misconduct on his own and did not record underage patients.

Levy was fired by the hospital on 8 February 2013 after the allegations came to light and was found dead 10 days later.

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