Boselli's Agent Casts Doubt on Medical Care Jaguars Deny Conflict Charge

Article excerpt

Byline: Bart Hubbuch, Times-Union staff writer

The agent for Tony Boselli said yesterday the Jaguars' arrangement with a local medical provider might have compromised the quality of treatment the All-Pro tackle received while he was with the team.

Boselli, now with the Houston Texans, suffered a season-ending shoulder injury last season and underwent surgery at the Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute. Selected in the expansion draft by the Texans, he has undergone two additional surgeries since leaving Jacksonville.

Boselli, 30, has yet to play for Houston and there is concern his career is in jeopardy.

Agent Jack Mills said that if Boselli's career is over, Boselli would not "rule out" a medical malpractice lawsuit against the team physician who performed the surgery, Carlos Tandron, the Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute and Baptist Health.

Boselli, reached last night in Houston, did not refute his agent's charges but said he has "no plans on suing."

"If I have a problem with Dr. Tandron, I'll handle it myself. It's nobody's business," Boselli said. "I absolutely have nothing to say about my shoulder and the procedures done by Dr. Tandron and JOI."

Mills called it "ludicrous'' for the Jaguars to have a paid sponsorship agreement with Baptist Health, which includes the Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute among its affiliates.

Jaguars senior vice president Paul Vance angrily rebutted Mills, saying there is no relation between Baptist Health's sponsorship and the team's decision to use doctors from the institute.

"We have a tremendous investment in our players, and to imply that we would base our medical care for those players on who gave us the biggest sponsorship is silly,'' Vance said. "There's absolutely no connection.''

The Jaguars' medical care has been the subject of national attention since former team doctor Stephen Lucie was sued for malpractice by ex-Jaguars lineman Jeff Novak. A local jury awarded Novak $5.3 million last month, but that decision was later thrown out by a judge.

Lucie, who also is a physician with the Jacksonville Orthopaedic Institute, stepped down as the Jaguars' team doctor last year and was replaced by Tandron in that role. Tandon repaired a torn labrum in Boselli's left shoulder last November.

The Jaguars "are obviously very sensitive about anything to do with their medical care,'' Mills said. "If they've got a conflict interest there between making money for the club and [doing] what's best for the players, then they should be concerned.''

Tandron, who also performed labrum repair this year on current Jaguars safety Donovin Darius, did not return two phone calls seeking comment. …