A tragic story
Leo Sher, M.D.
April 27, 2010. On Monday, April 26, shortly before 8 am, Vajinder Toor, M.D., 34, a postdoctoral trainee at the Yale Medical School Fellowship Training Program in Infectious Diseases, was gunned down by Lishan Wang, M.D., 44, while walking in the parking lot towards his car at Meadows Condominiums in Branford, Connecticut, not far from the Yale Medical Center (1-3). Dr. Toor was shot several times. Dr. Wang, who now lives in Marietta, Georgia, was charged yesterday with murder, attempted murder and firearms charges, and is being held in lieu of a $2 million bond. Dr. Wang has no criminal record since entering the U.S. 9 years ago from China.
Dr. Toor and Dr. Wang had worked together at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, New York. On May 15, 2008, Dr. Wang didn’t answer repeated pages to the intensive care unit, where he was covering for Dr. Toor. Dr. Toor reprimanded him and Dr. Wang threatened Dr. Toor in front of other employees. Dr. Wang began his residency in internal medicine at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center on July 1, 2006, and was reappointed on July 1, 2007. In summer 2008, Dr. Wang was fired.
Dr. Wang filed a federal discrimination lawsuit last year against the hospital, which mentioned a heated exchange with his supervisor in the residency program, “Dr. Vajinder” (1,2,4). Dr. Wang’s lawsuit accused “Dr. Vajinder” of threatening him and “using hostile body language.” According to the complaint, in April 2008, Dr. Wang accused Dr. Toor of singling out “two Chinese students and humiliating them verbally in front of all the other medical residents during a morning conference.” Dr. Wang’s lawsuit claimed injuries resulting from discrimination based on race, national origin and disability, and accused the hospital of retaliation against him for investigating, disclosing and opposing the discrimination.
A Morehouse School of Medicine (Atlanta) spokesperson says the college was horrified to hear that a former employee is charged in the killing of a Yale University physician (5). Dr. Wang had worked as a postdoctoral fellow for a year and resigned from his job at the Atlanta college in February 2010.
Dr. Toor graduated from Guru Govind Singh Medical College in Punjab, India, in 2001, and the Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center Residency Training Program in New York in 2008. He worked for about a year at the Austin Regional Clinic in Williamson County, Texas. In July 2009, he left Texas for Yale.
This heartbreaking story touches on many aspects of immigrants’ lives in the U.S. This story also raises concerns about morale in residency training programs and the quality of patients’ care in teaching hospitals.
- Fenton R, MacIntosh J. Yale doc slain. http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/brooklyn/yale_doc_slain_IZ9Uq2x5Zqv5uo3k6GU38M Accessed April 27, 2010
- Ex-colleague shoots dead Indian physician 2 years after tiff, attack on Yale doctor. http://www.telegraphindia.com/1100428/jsp/nation/story_12389162.jsp Accessed April 27, 2010
- http://medicine.yale.edu/intmed/infdis/fellowship/current.aspx Accessed April 27, 2010
- http://www.nypost.com/r/nypost/2010/04/27/news/media/yaledocsuit.pdf Accessed April 27, 2010
- Man charged in Yale killing worked at Morehouse. http://myrecordjournal.com/ap_state_news/article_ce370f4f-b041-5e30-8a23-dd947cd8e3e2.html Accessed April 27, 2010