Medical Board Malfeasance: How some Medical Boards and Administrative Judges have unjuslty ruled aga
Malfeasance: Illegal, unjustified or detrimental conduct, especially in the performance of public or official duties.
The Medical Boards in the various states have been assigned the task of licensing physicians and other health care providers and of disciplining those who have violated laws or transgressed from accepted standards of care in the practice of medicine. Some providers are themselves impaired due to illness, alcohol abuse or the use of illicit drugs. A means to monitor and discipline these providers is certainly necessary, and the Medical Board system with its Administrative Law Judges and prosecuting attorneys was set up to fulfill this task.
However, some Medcial Boards, Administrative Law Judges and prosecuting attorneys have abused their power by improperly disciplining physicians for simply practicing non-traditional approaches to health care.
Many alternative and innovative physicians have had their clinics raided, their licenses revoked or have been otherwise disciplined and harrassed by these Medical Boards. Why the Medical Boards do this,a nd the consequences of their doing this, have major implications, not only for the physicians so disciplined, but also for all citizens of the United States, because this is really an attempt to criminalize complementary, alternative or holistic approaches to healing and prevention of disease, which are generally safer, often better documented and more effective than are the methods employed by "conventional" (allopathic) practitioners.
This appears to be an effort to suppress innovative approaches to healing and to maintain the status quo, which supports the philosophy that states for every disease one must take a drug, that focuses on illness rather than wellness and that deemphasizes nutrtion, prevention and natural, non-patentable pathways to health.
. The dangers implicit in these unfair Medical Board decisions are that any doctor may face possible ruin if he or she practices in an innovative way, even if (as in the case of Drs. Sinaiko and Schwartz) there has been no harm done to anyone.
An even more dire consequence is that "Medical freedom and creativity, vital to progress in medicinem, will be suppressed" [Quote from atty for Dr. Sinaiko]
As a former deputy attorney general for the Medical Board said: "I can do a random audit of any doctor's charts, gather around my team of so-called experts, and pick apart (with 20-20 hindsight) the impression, the diagnoses, the treatment, the charting, and then attach legal words to it: negligence, incompetence, extreme departure from the standard of care, a standard which of course all my experts would know and claim for themsleves.
Who among us could wather such an audit? I can get any doctor's license with this technique...because you can always find doctors who will disagree with another doctor's conclusions, techniques, (and) his style."
“80% of accused doctors surrender their license without firing a shot, because they are unable to withstand the financial hardship such a campaign inevitably costs”
Please support the physician or other health care provider who has been unjustly and unfairly disciplined by a Medical Board.
Here are the stories of some of these unfortunate healthcare providers.
Dr Alan Schwartz (MD)Dr. Schwartz’ involvement with the Medical Board of California began in 1996. At that time he was a Board Certified pediatrician and the Chairman of a large pediatric department at a well-known multi-physician health clinic in southern California. His license was suspended and then put on probation by the Medical Board as a result of an accusation by a 16-year-old patient who accused Dr. Schwartz of masturbating him during a patient visit, a charge that Dr. Schwartz vigorously denies.
The Medical Board was contacted, a hearing was held, and the judge ruled in favor of the complainant. Dr. Schwartz was placed on ten years probation and was required to have a third party monitor present whenever he “examined” a male minor child. Dr. Schwartz was devastated by the accusation and the judge’s conclusions and recommendations. He nevertheless complied with the dictates that the Medical Board had imposed. Dr. Schwartz decided to continue his career in medicine utilizing complementary, alternative, holistic approaches rather than continue the conventional “allopathic” drug-based practice. Dr. Schwartz had for many years been enamored of the so-called “holistic” approach to healing. He did a lot of reading and had attended many lectures, conventions and seminars in this regard. “Conventional medicine” is disease-based. It tends to treat symptoms and not causes. The holistic (“alternative”) discipline is based on the concept of preventing disease by focusing on causes. Holistic practitioners try to find out what is harming the body (food allergies, intolerances, toxic metals, chronic infections, etc) and eliminate those things. They also try to determine what the individual needs that he or she is not getting enough of (vitamins, minerals, essential fatty acids, hormones, etc) and then supply those things in optimal amounts. If one gets out “the bad guys” and replenishes “the good guys” it should not be surprising that better health will result. And it is almost always does. Dr. Schwartz decided to go into family practice as an “alternative medicine” practitioner. He became Medical Director and owner of the Holistic Resource Center in Agoura Hills, CA in 2001 and has practiced there ever since. His practice included mainly adults, but he did see some children, and these were mainly children with autism or ADHD. Dr. Schwartz became interested in autism and related disorders because one of his coworkers had an autistic child and provided Dr. Schwartz with a lot of information regarding this condition. Dr. Schwartz started attending meetings sponsored by the Autism Research Institute (these are called DAN! Meetings. DAN! Stands for “Defeat Autism Now”). The meetings are presented by scientists, health care providers and other experts in this field and are grounded in cutting edge science. The Autism Research Institute believes that about 50% of the autistic children treated according to the DAN! Protocols can have their autism reversed, and this has been Dr. Schwartz’s experience as well. Since restarting his practice, Dr. Schwartz has had his patient medical records reviewed by independent practitioners approved by the California Medical Board. These independent reviews have consistently found Dr. Schwartz’s medical care and medical records to be exemplary. There have been no complaints from his patients either. None!So, why did the Medical Board decide to investigate Dr. Schwartz a second time? When a physician is under a probationary decree from the Medical Board, probation monitors (also known as “Investigators”) are appointed to oversee the probation. Their tenures appear to be limited, as Dr. Schwartz had 5 of these monitors during his 6 years in practice at the Holistic Resource Center. The first two monitors interpreted the stipulation that Dr. Schwartz had to have a third party monitor present only when he was examining a male minor child to mean “only when he physically examined such a child.” This would make sense in light of the initial accusation. The presence of a child in Dr. Schwartz office accompanied by one or both parents did not constitute a violation of the probationary decree if the child was not physically examined by Dr. Schwartz. The third medical Board Investigator, Jesse Valdez, seemed antagonistic to Dr. Schwartz during his entire tenure as probation monitor. He constantly misinterpreted and misstated things that Dr. Schwartz had told him. For example, he accused Dr. Schwartz of not telling any of the previous monitors that he had been “seeing” male minor children in his practice. Dr. Schwartz told him that all the previous monitors were aware of that fact, that the physicians reviewing Dr. Schwartz’s records recorded the presence of children as patients and that the sign on the clinic window clearly stated that this was a “Family Practice Clinic.” Investigator Valdez misrepresented what Dr. Schwartz told him when asked how many male minor children the doctor had “seen” in his practice. Dr. Schwartz did not remember the exact number but indicated that it was probably over 20. Dr. Schwartz had not physically examined these children and Investigator Valdez knew this, but told the Medical Board that Dr. Schwartz had violated the probationary decree that he have a third party chaperone present when examining (Dr. Schwartz had used the word “seen”) these children. But Dr. Schwartz had never physically examined these children. Dr. Schwartz never attempted to hide the fact that a child had accompanied the parents to the clinic. Indeed he documented this on every chart. In almost every instance the child was in another room watching TV and being monitored by clinic staff. It is difficult to get an independent third party to episodically come to the clinic whenever a male minor child is there. People have their own schedules and family concerns and are not always able to leave to come to the clinic at a moment’s notice. The financial burden regarding hiring such an individual part or full time was also a factor that Dr. Schwartz had to consider. He ultimately decided to not physically examine these children because he felt it was not necessary for the following reasons. · The autistic children that Dr. Schwartz was seeing had their own pediatricians and they had all been adequately worked up by independent authorities. The parents were consulting with Dr. Schwartz in order to learn the Autism Research Institute’s approach to reversing the autism, and not for him to rediagnose the child. However, in virtually every instance Dr. Schwartz did confirm the diagnosis by taking a highly detailed history, which included a lengthy autism questionnaire. · Autism is not a disease characterized by physical criteria. The diagnosis is based on behavioral observations only. Autism was and still is listed as a psychiatric illness. The diagnostic criteria have to do with impaired communication and social skills, characteristic behaviors like arm flapping, toe walking, fascination with spinning objects, echolalia, anxiety, obsessive traits, etc. The physical appearance of autistic children is generally not any different than that of non-autistic children, although it is true that there are individuals with syndromes like Mongolism (Downs Syndrome). Smith-Lemli-Opitz, tuberous sclerosis, etc. that can manifest with autistic symptoms. · Dr. Schwartz knew that psychologists and psychiatrists (who are medical doctors) diagnose and treat autistic children, and they do not do physical examinations on these children, nor are they required to. Investigator Valdez subsequently notified Dr. Schwartz that the definition of “examine” had been changed, and that from then on the new definition of “examine” was “to observe, see or treat.” Dr. Schwartz later learned that Mr. Valdez, who was not medically trained, had made this new definition up himself and had not consulted the Medical Board in this regard. Dr. Schwartz objected to this new definition and pointed out that while “seeing” and “observing” were certainly part of an appropriate “medical examination”, the mere looking at (observing or seeing) someone did not constitute a valid medical examination and that “treating” (the act of prescribing remedies or a course of therapy) was never part of the definition of “examine.” That would imply that the mere writing of a prescription or suggesting a course of therapy to someone would constitute an “examination.” Nevertheless, Dr. Schwartz had no choice but to accept this absurd definition. Which meant that he had to hire someone as a third party acceptable to the Medical Board to oversee any male minor patient visit. This he did, and from that point on whenever he had a male minor child in his office the monitor was called in to supervise. The Medical Board has never contested this fact. Investigator Valdez also requested that Dr. Schwartz bring all his autism charts to a meeting with Mr. Valdez and Dr. Carella, a pediatrician chosen by the Medical Board to sit in on the meeting. Dr. Schwartz was asked to read from some of the charts. Neither Dr. Carella nor Mr. Valdez ever saw the charts at that meeting, and they never saw any of the lab data, initial health assessment questionnaire (9-11 pages) or other notes. Dr. Carella indicated then (and subsequently) that he didn’t know much about autism. This did not stop him from severely criticizing Dr. Schwartz charts as "inadequate" in their lack of detail and their brevity, in their lack of testing for toxic metals, and a variety of other complaints, none of which were valid. Now the facts are that Dr. Schwartz’s charts are highly detailed. The initial intake i
Copyright 2002-2008. Holistic Resource Center.
29020 Agoura Road; Suite A-8; Agoura Hills, CA 91301
Phone: (818) 597-0966 ~ Contact Us
Website Powered by PD-go!