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HIV disclosure lawsuit wins appeal

A case involving a lab disclosing a patient's HIV-positive status to his employer will go back to trial. The Missouri Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the jury instructions were prejudicial.

The plaintiff, identified in court documents as John Doe 1631, had sued Quest Diagnostics and their Central West End clinical lab after the results of a 2006 blood test were faxed to the Wayman AME Church where the man worked at that time.

Quest had argued that the man had given permission to fax the results because the church's fax number appeared at the top of the doctor's order form. The fax apparently sat in plain view in the church office for several days because the plaintiff was on vacation when it arrived.

He's seeking unspecified punitive damages and compensation for emotional distress.

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