published Friday, December 27th, 2013

Lawsuit against a Tennessee drug rehab center settled

CHARLOTTE, Tenn. — A lawsuit filed over a death at New Life Lodge rehabilitation center has been settled.

The Tennessean reports terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

The lawsuit was filed in August 2011 and sought $32 million in compensatory and punitive damages in the death of 29-year-old Lindsey Poteet, who had a 17-month-old daughter when she died in September 2010.

"The legal matter involving the loss of Lindsey Poteet has been resolved by agreement between New Life Lodge and the Estate of Lindsey Poteet," the Burns facility said in an email response to questions.

Noting that the terms of the settlement are confidential, the statement continued, "the sympathies of everyone at New Life Lodge are with the family of Ms. Poteet for her sad passing. New Life Lodge remains committed to our mission of helping patients in their struggles with addiction, and to building on our record of continually enhancing our approaches to treatment of this devastating disease."

A major issue in the case was the center's decision to take Poteet in a company vehicle to a Nashville hospital, which would have been about 30 miles away, instead of transporting her by ambulance to a closer hospital.

Two other lawsuits filed after the deaths of two other patients at the facility are still pending in circuit court in Dickson County.

The state shut down New Life after the deaths and a series of stories by the newspaper. State officials later let the center reopen, but with a reduced number of patients.

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