Why, Sparman?

Cardiologist under fire from Grenadian family of patient who died in his care

Local cardiologist Dr Alfred Sparman is refuting claims by a Grenadian family that he failed to properly care for a heart patient three years ago, resulting in the man’s death from a heart attack.

Sherwin Natoo died after he and his wife arrived here in December 2014 for treatment from the cardiologist.

Dr Alfred Sparman

His surviving relatives recently appeared on television in their home country claiming Natoo’s death was avoidable. They made a similar claim on Facebook last Thursday,

Natoo was referred to the Sparman clinic by a Grenadian doctor after he was involved in a vehicular accident. The family said the decision was made to send him to Barbados because he had a heart problem considered to be severe.

They also said that while he routinely travelled to Miami for required check ups, Grenada’s proximity to Barbados and the severity of his condition swayed the family’s decision.

Stefan Ali, an attorney and the dead man’s nephew, told his Grenadian television audience that on arrival at the clinic here, his uncle was examined by Dr Sparman who assured the family the worst was over and Sherwin’s condition was stable, only to be told four days later that urgent surgery was needed to replace the fibrillator.

The Natoo family said Dr Sparman told them the full cost of $92,000 had to be paid upfront, a sum that took them 12 days to raise.

“That’s when the doctor . . . Dr Sparman decided to attempt to do surgery, but before he could do the surgery, he claims that Sherwin had cardiac arrest and died . . . and that was kind of shocking to us, because by that time, it seemed as though he was doing a little bit stronger, he was able to get up and brush his teeth and stuff like that, that he wasn’t doing in earlier days,” Ali told MTV News in St George’s.

Ali complained that even though the surgery was not done, the doctor refused to refund any of the money.

However, speaking through his attorney-at-law Sir Richard Cheltenham, QC, Dr Sparman denied Ali’s version of events.

“That account of Mr Natoo’s treatment contains many distortions of what really took place. It stands in contrast, too, to the high level of appreciation expressed to Dr Sparman and his staff by the patient’s wife, who was always by his side,” Sir Richard stated.

“Dr Sparman specifically wishes to reject any suggestion that he was incompetent or indifferent in his treatment of Mr Natoo who was seriously unwell. Mr Natoo received the best medical care available in the circumstances at the Sparman Clinic, but unfortunately, died notwithstanding,” the legal counsel added.

Sir Richard said Dr Sparman had expressed his sympathy to the Natoo family, “but wishes to emphasize that no health care institution can save all its patients”.

“Some, despite the care provided, die,” he concluded.

The Natoo family is demanding refunds of the cost of the fibrillator and the surgery, an investigation by Grenada’s ministry of health into the procedure for referring patients from the general hospital in St George’s “and that the Grenada Medical Council affirmatively state that Sparman would not be granted any future licence to practice in Grenada”.

The family wants an end to both public and private referrals to Dr Sparman, intervention by the Dr Keith Mitchell administration with the Barbados Government regarding the cardiologist, and an explanation from St George’s as to why Dr Sparman had been granted a licence to practise in Grenada when he had been disqualified under Grenadian law.

His lawyer said Dr Sparman, having practised medicine for 27 years, had demonstrated his commitment to patient care and his patients have lauded his bedside manner and medical skills.

He added that his client would be exploring his legal rights with respect to Ali’s statements.

emmanueljoseph@barbadostoday.bb

32 Responses to Why, Sparman?

  1. Ossie Moore May 25, 2017 at 12:33 am

    Correct me if I am wrong and I’ll stand corrected but is this the same person . . . . .just asking ?

    https://barbadosfreepress.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/the-strange-case-of-doctor-ishmael-and-mister-sparman/

    Reply
  2. Mark My Word May 25, 2017 at 3:08 am

    Dr.Sparman is one of the best cardiologist on earth or Mars the man died and his nephew just feel he should get back some of the money because he is a lawyer.

    Reply
    • Leroy May 25, 2017 at 8:33 am

      If the surgery wasnt performed then he should get the $ for surgery back, no?

      Reply
    • Randolph May 25, 2017 at 10:39 am

      So if he did not perform the op,should he still hold on to the patient’s money?

      Reply
      • Sam May 26, 2017 at 1:25 am

        Surgery wasn’t perform however it was said that the fibrilator was opened…..therefore making it useless.

        Reply
  3. Jennifer May 25, 2017 at 5:04 am

    Dead man tell no tales, dead man settle the chit. Gotten riches and lost souls to the fraternity. How long is a piece of string???? Is it ever too long????? In that day of reckoning who can abide??

    Reply
    • Peter May 25, 2017 at 8:43 am

      Jennifer the jackass strikes again. She has no knowledge of either of either of these two professional black individuals nor the subject matter, nor the profession itself, yet she ignorantly mouths off. Check the time she posts her comments. very early in the mornings while it’s still dark. I guess she’s accustomed to these time as she has to get up at this kind of time back in England to catch the bus and ride the tube to her domestic job by 7:00 a.m. She should refrain from this habitual practice and write something the AVERAGE READER CAN COMPREHEND.

      Reply
  4. SMH May 25, 2017 at 7:00 am

    Quote fuh $8000 up front.. my nephew had anxiety attack. NO HEART PROBLEM!! Thank God for a 2nd opinion.

    Reply
  5. Greengiant May 25, 2017 at 7:54 am

    They want to go to heaven, but don’t want to die. They decided to send their relative here because his condition was critical. He suddenly had improved to the point where they’re now saying his death is due to negligence. They are even questioning the professional recommendation of the doctor.

    If they think they should get refunded for a service not performed but paid for, pursue that, but don’t slander a black brother. I hope not but won’t be surprised if the license and practice talk didn’t originate right here in Barbados.

    Reply
  6. jennifer May 25, 2017 at 8:48 am

    The noose waiting on a neck.

    Reply
    • Peter May 25, 2017 at 9:53 am

      Yes… your neck…..

      Reply
  7. Gerald May 25, 2017 at 9:00 am

    It’s amazing how people or quick to defend. There is a lot the average person doesn’t know. So as not to be carried to court, I will just say; not even my dog will be treated by that man. Bajan’s need to do background checks before choosing a doctors

    Reply
  8. Peter May 25, 2017 at 9:04 am

    Let me further add to what Greengiant cleverly wrote. I know both these dignified cardiologists surgeons very well although to date, I have never had cause to be treated medically by either of them. I happen to know several patients who were all successfully treated by both Doctors. Some have stayed at Dr. Sparman’s medical center in Belleville and from around the region, Many pacemakers were su7ccessfully implanted by Dr. Ishmael, many free o9n behalf of the RCBB. and their performance can be monitored by phone from anywhere in the Caribbean. The article on the link provided by Ossie Moore makes for interesting reading. Thank you Ossie.

    Reply
  9. Peter May 25, 2017 at 9:51 am

    For the family of the deceased Mr. Natoo, to successfully claim anything, they will have to produce certified copies of the agreement outlining among other things, the conditions and precare of the patient before and under which the said operation was to be performed, the detailed nonrefundable costs relating thereof, One MUST remember that NO DOCTOR can guarantee complete success of any operation. We all have to die at some point. Outside of that, they will have to prove malpractice which is impossible since the doctor did NOT performed the operation. I* think Mr. Natoo’s family should making this a public issue, accept their loss, grieve the loss and recover and carry o9n accordingly. Just speculating here If Mr.Natoo had died whilst in surgery, They would have no choice but to accept that result and move on. Places credence on the saying….. ” When you are dead, you are done.”

    Reply
  10. Randolph May 25, 2017 at 10:36 am

    Spartan is a fraud and a thief,but he will have too much to answer for at the judgement

    Reply
  11. Ossie Moore May 25, 2017 at 10:54 am

    One of the biggest cardinal sins , never tell bajans that one of their people did wrong .

    Jamaicans , Trinidadians , Guyanese and the rest of the world can do wrong . . . .but bajans ?

    OMG never wrong , always right.

    Reply
  12. Elle May 25, 2017 at 11:04 am

    I believe that if the surgery was not performed the money should be returned….but some where in the media i read that the device that was to be used on or put into the deceased was opened in preparation for surgery and cannot be now used on someone else so that is maybe why they dont feel that the money should be returned….but if all this is true i still think that at least some money should be given to the family….my God ,have a heart Sparman and company, its not always about the bottom line ,copassion should play a role some how…..

    Reply
  13. Ossie Moore May 25, 2017 at 11:25 am

    The money should be returned to the family PERIOD . But this is where the ” hypocrisy of the bajans ” come into play.

    Now let’s turn the tables here . Had a bajan gone to Miami , new York , London or Toronto for surgery and the surgery was not performed and the money was not returned to the bajan , then OMG the world have been hearing tons and tons of ‘crap’ about how unprofessional these big countries are , they don’t like black peolple , they are crooks etc, etc.

    But yet still it is okay now for Dr. Sparman ” A BAJAN ” to keep the other people’s money. You see the bajan hypocrisy involved here ?

    Reply
  14. DONT ASK ME May 25, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    DR Sparman is not a bajan by birth he is from guyana lived in the USA AND MIGRATED TO B,dos SO DONT PAINT all medical Doctors with the same brush just saying.

    Reply
  15. Milli Watt May 25, 2017 at 1:08 pm

    92,000.00 paid………. no surgery then why was the money paid. was there a post-mortem. I agree wid ossie moore……… sparman pay de people dey money they already suffered a lost and dat money ain’t YOURS!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  16. Mark My Word May 25, 2017 at 1:50 pm

    If the dead man nephew is a real real Lawyer, he would of known what steps to take to seek redress, but instead he prefers to go to the media to try and stop the good Doc from getting work from Grenada again, what a waste of of Lawyer. I smell a rat here and it stinks.

    Reply
    • gaza May 25, 2017 at 2:02 pm

      a sex offender! see the link on the first post

      Reply
  17. Peter May 25, 2017 at 2:17 pm

    Unless I see the official medical form outlining the terms and conditions of the agreement which will no doubt be signed and to which a disclaimer is outlined, I will not blame Dr. Sparman. Remember he sought Dr. Sparman’s professional service not the other way around. the risk clearly falls in his lap. Time is money and Dr. sparman besides committing himself to operating time, may have booked equipment, assistants, and other issues not forgetting his preparations and study of this particular patient plys recovery and after care. Try booking an airline ticket first class then no showed. See if you will be refunded. or you accept $1,ooo.oo from a politician for your vote and didn’t vote for that politician. He dare not ask you back for the money he illegally bribed you with. Dr. .Sir Richard “Johnny” Cheltenham is a brilliant lehal luminary. He will tear up that claim and have their lawyers for lunch.

    Reply
    • h,callender May 25, 2017 at 6:21 pm

      @Peter; some of your statements are misleading. You can get your money refunded from the airlines, next time you`re booking , read the rules carefully. Medical malpractice will be hard to prove in Barbados, not because you`re an attorney that you can go into court and knowing nothing about medical terms, health care and so on, are they any such lawyers in Barbados?

      Reply
  18. gsmiley May 25, 2017 at 4:18 pm

    not only a sex offender gaza.

    Reply
  19. nanci May 26, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    didnt doctor sparman had another case about someone who died before? I think the family shouldve travelled to miami, because first you will have the doctor and some other doctors to give their input, but having only one doctor sends a bad feeling, because its only one person you getting advice from. Hospitals will have people who would discuss the outcome before the surgery. I think if the person didnt get a chance to use the device, some of the money should be refunded. This doctor and his lawyer will come up with all the terms in the world, and no money will be refunded. I also think private doctors have their own agenda. People need to realize that. A hospital have to abide by some overall rules, state rules, federal rules etc. Private entities have most rules and agreements in their favor. A woman in barbados received the wrong medication from a private doctor, but the family was unable to sue or get any compensation, because private doctors, its like its their words against your, and you not a doctor, you wont know half the things they talking about. Its best to go to a hospital in severe cases like these. The guy was doing good, he was up and brushing his teeth, but then you heard he died. Sounds a little suspect to me. You never know if the doctor cut the wrong place or the patient didnt get the amount of services to aid him, you never will know, because the doctor and his staff wont disclose everything.

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  20. nanci May 26, 2017 at 1:01 pm

    ossie moore is so correct, not only will the people not get their money back. The case will get tie up in court for years, a trick by some lawyers. Which will further push the family in such turmoil. People think when they go to private doctors, they will be getting the best care. NO, private doctors or private facilities try to cut cost. They dont disclose all their experience and years they did crucial surgeries. Also all cardiologists dont have the years of experience with surgeries. Its a lot of things you have to look into when doing surgery. Its not like you going to a private doctor because you are sick. A hospital should have been chosen, you got different people coming in the room, who specializes in all those particular areas. Its like the math teacher not too good at helping the child with reading. The math teacher may know reading, but not a specialized reading teacher. Private facilities, one shoe fits all. Wish the guy got all the up steps before going there.

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  21. nanci May 26, 2017 at 1:13 pm

    H callender also hit the nail on the head. The doctor will have his lawyer come up with so many medical terms, and the family will need to hire a malpractice doctor that specialize in this area. That will cost millions of dollars, because you might have to pay a malpractice doctor who will look at the autopsy and go from there, but if the family go into court with a lawyer who dont have malpractice as his field, the family will loose the case. I know many malpractice incidences happen in barbados, but if your are poor, not educated in those areas, its hard to prove. Also the autopsy will tell what killed the guy, did something happen on the operation table, that render the guy incapable of withstanding the surgery? did the doctor monitor the guy a couple days before surgery to see if he was strong enough to withstand open heart operation? its a lot of questions, and the lawyers will know how to play the game. Just hope this doctor pay his lawyer double what he took from the family. Hope he pays his lawyer or lawyer a couple million dollars, and be tarnished in the end. So in a way its good because many people will got to a hospital that have all the equipment to monitor the patient, and I mean modern equipment, and also the patient needs to be in a hospital for at least a week to see if he is strong enough for such surgery.

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  22. Papanali May 27, 2017 at 6:44 am

    So if he had such a severe heart condition how then was it such a surprise that he died?
    If the Dr. Sparman attempted to do the surgery and he died in the table how can they want money back?
    I think they helped his death by taking 12 days to raise the money for the procedure, 12 days of SEVERE HEART CONDITION.

    Reply
  23. Anderson June 14, 2017 at 9:17 pm

    Hmmmmm

    Reply
  24. Anderson June 14, 2017 at 11:06 pm

    Hmmmmm

    Reply
  25. King Moses June 17, 2017 at 8:25 am

    This good Doctor saved my aunts life 7 years ago. She died en route to his hospital..They worked on her on the ground, then she was in the ICU for a week..Dr Sparman said she needed a pacemaker and that was done. Three days later my aunt was home.. she is still doing her garden until this day..If someone has a problem with the doctor go to the courts why try to scandalize the man name..I smell a rat..Dr Sparman shouldn’t loose sleep if he wasn’t good they would a get him outa here long ago…l ain’t believe one shoit

    Reply

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