Maternity management platform Dorsata filed a lawsuit in Suffolk County, Massachusetts, Civil Court yesterday against health care technology company athenahealth and nationwide women’s health company Unified Women’s Healthcare, alleging 11 counts against the providers, including theft of trade secrets, unjust enrichment, breach of contract and unsavory interference with current customers.
dorsata provides a tool designed to help prevent changes in medical care during childbirth and reduce the rate of preventable complications using care technology and clinical data.
IN complaint, Dorsata, Inc. v. Athenahealth Group, Inc., filed here, Dorsata alleges that, in 2021, Unified acquired Women’s Health USA, an existing customer of Dorsata. After the acquisition, athena approached Dorsata proposing that the two entities work together to pursue a broader relationship with Unified by creating an integrated solution to offer the company.
According to Dorsata, after signing a non-disclosure agreement and amid discussions about athena’s possible acquisition of the EHR player, it provided trade secrets to athena and the two companies made oral agreements to approach Unified as a joint venture.
Dorsata then developed a software product called vU that she and athena would release together to Unified.
Dorsata claims that athena, meanwhile, was creating its own version of vU to present to Unified, without the knowledge of Dorsata. At the same time, he convinced the EHR player to sign a promissory note with an exclusivity clause, meaning Dorsata was not allowed to do business with Athens’ competitors.
Dorsata needed an infusion of cash for its business, and Athena gave the company $6 million, the terms of which were addressed in the promissory note.
Dorsata says Unified aided and abetted Athena’s actions, and the two companies cut Dorsata out of the deal, resulting in, among other things, difficulty for Dorsata to repay its $6 million owed to Athena by 2025.
dorsata also claims that athena is extracting data from tof his company existing customers, asking the companies to compare its UV product with Dorsata’s and that athena is gaining feedback on how to improve its offering.
Dorsata filed nine causes of action against Athena, including unfair and deceptive acts and practices, breach of oral contract, breach of fiduciary duty, common law fraud, unjust enrichment, theft of trade secrets, tortious interference with current customers , breach of nondisclosure agreement and commercial disparagement.
The company filed two counts against Unified, including aiding and abetting a breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract.
Dorsata is seeking damages caused by the loss of expected profits, the value of damage to reputation, the loss of the company’s reputation, the value of lost future business, and damages for trading advantages illegally gained in the market.
It is also asking the court to find that the promissory note was “a fraudulent artifice intended to prevent Dorsata from competing in the market” and, therefore, prevent Athena from seeking to collect the $6 million.
“We have been seriously harmed and we hope the court will remedy the situation,” said David Fairbrothers, co-founder and CEO of Dorsata. MobiHealthNews in an email.
In an email to MobiHealthNewsathenahealth said it does not comment on pending litigation.