Video stories

"Doctors fear controversial program made to help them"

P.J. Randhawa, Investigative Reporter, NBC Affiliate KSDK, St. Louis IL. Part 1, aired Feb 15, 2019

"Many say a controversial program designed to help doctors with mental health issues is out of control,

destroying careers and causing some doctors to commit suicide."

"Doctor left destitute after seeking help

from physician health program"

P.J. Randhawa, Investigative Reporter, NBC Affiliate KSDK, St. Louis IL. Part 2, aired May 21, 2019

"A program designed to help depressed and addicted doctors has been blamed

for ruining lives, and even driving some physicians to suicide."

ABC 11 I-Team: "Some NC doctors, patients

still don't trust medical watchdog"

By Jonah Kaplan Friday, May 17, 2019

ABC11 WTVD Eyewitness News – Political and Investigative Reporter Jonah Kaplan

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- A group of North Carolina doctors and their patients are claiming the state's leading non-profit medical watchdog is not fulfilling its mission and instead unfairly treating physicians and the people relying on their care. The complaints are directed at the North Carolina Physicians Health Program ….


Key Articles

Medical Licensing Boards, Physician Health Programs, and the Lack of ADA Compliance: an Opportunity for Plaintiff Lawyers

by William Goren (https://www.williamgoren.com)  

July 13, 2019


" Where the [FSMB Physician Impairment] policy consistently runs into trouble is the lack of awareness of key ADA definitional terms. In particular, the policy clearly does not take into account that a person has a disability under the ADA if they have a record of a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity or if they are regarded as having a physical or mental impairment."

...

"If a lawyer representing a physician headed into or in the PHP process already is not using the ADA in his or her advocacy on behalf of the client, then ... that lawyer, in my opinion, is committing legal malpractice."

Medical Licensing Boards, Physician Health Programs, and the Lack of ADA Compliance: an Opportunity for Plaintiff Lawyers​ - Goren



Coercion, Moral Injury, and Suicide in the Medical Regulatory-Therapeutic Complex

Emmons, Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons

Volume 24 Number 2 Summer 2019


" In the MRTC [Medical Regulatory Therapeutic Complex], as described by Boyd and Knight, the use of licensing as leverage is almost exclusively based on compliance with PHP monitoring contracts, not on physician conduct in clinical practice that poses direct, recognizable hazards to patients."


"For the purpose of ethical analysis, it is useful to compare the use of coercion in civil commitment to its use in the MRTC."

Coercion, Moral Injury, and Suicide in the Medical Regulatory-Therapeutic Complex - Emmons



Do Physician Health Programs Increase Physician Suicides?

Pamela L. Wible, MD, Medscape August 28, 2015


" Our medical schools, hospitals, and clinics actually cause or exacerbate mental health conditions in physicians, and then they blame us and force us to release our confidential medical records. And in the end, they take our license.

Maybe that's why my friend, an excellent psychiatrist, drives 200 miles out of town, pays cash, and uses a fake name to get mental health care."


"So who the hell is protecting us from being misdiagnosed, mistreated, and abused? There are many

who prey upon physicians. So who cares for doctors? And how in the world can we give patients the care

we've never received?"

Do Physician Health Programs

Increase Physician Suicides? Wible



Physician Health Programs:

More Harm Than Good?

State-Based Programs Under Fire

Pauline Anderson, Medscape Aug 19, 2015


"There is growing scrutiny of US physician health programs (PHPs).... Detractors of the PHP system claim physicians who voluntarily disclose they have mental health or drug problems can be forced into treatment without recourse, face expensive contracts, and are frequently sent out of their home state to receive the prescribed therapy. Some physicians allege that during their interaction with the treatment centers, large amounts of money were demanded up front before any assessment was even conducted.


In addition, critics assert that there is no real oversight and regulation of these programs.

Called by turns coercive, controlling, and secretive, with possible conflicts of interest, some say the PHP experience has led vulnerable physicians to contemplate suicide."

Physician Health Programs: More Harm Than Good? State-Based Programs Under Fire - Pauline Anderson



Physician Health Programs Under Fire

Jeanne Lenzer, Associate Editor,  

BMJ - The British Medical Journal

June 30, 2016


"Physician health programs, which provide support and monitoring for doctors with mental health issues and alcohol or drug problems, exist in 47 states and the District of Columbia. But critics charge that some programs are punitive, unmonitored, and deprive doctors of due process rights, preventing them from challenging diagnoses they disagree with.

Some doctors say their medical license was suspended or revoked without evidence of professional impairment, tarnishing their reputation and ending their career.

Simply answering “yes” to an employment or licensing question about past treatment for depression can be enough to trigger what one doctor described as a “Kafkaesque nightmare.”


[NC] State auditor Beth Wood told The BMJ that holes in the program “were so big you could drive a truck through them.” She said doctors could find it difficult, if not impossible, to defend themselves against an incorrect assessment because they were not allowed to appeal a diagnosis or assessment to the medical board."

Physician Health Programs Under Fire

Jeanne Lenzer, associate editor of the British Medical Journal, asks whether bias and profit are forcing some doctors into unnecessary treatment programs for impaired physicians



Systematic Abuse and Misuse of Psychiatry in the Medical Regulatory-Therapeutic Complex

Emmons et al., Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons

Volume 23 Number 4 Winter 2018


" ... systematic abuse and misuse of psychiatry occurring in the medical regulatory environment has, in our view, escaped notice because of the stigma and powerlessness of those affected, coupled with a lack of governmental oversight or judicial recognition of what is considered to be an intra- professional issue."

Systematic Abuse and Misuse of Psychiatry in the Medical Regulatory-Therapeutic Complex

Emmons et al.



Ethical and Managerial Considerations Regarding State Physician Health Programs

J. Wesley Boyd, MD, PhD and John R. Knight, MD

J Addict Med 2012;00: 1–4


" ... We recommend that the broader medical community begin to reassess PHPs as a whole. Consideration should be given toward the implementation of independent ethical oversight and establish an appeals process for PHP clients who feel they are being treated unfairly, to ensure that PHPs fulfill their mission in an ethical manner. Also, we believe that the relationships of PHPs to evaluation and treatment centers and their respective licensing boards be as transparent as possible and openly communicated to all PHP clients."

Ethical and Managerial Considerations Regarding State Physician Health Programs

J. Wesley Boyd, MD, PhD and John R. Knight, MD



Doctors Pay Up or Else Don't Work

J. Wesley Boyd, MD, PhD

Psychology Today 12/1/2019


… roughly twice a month I am contacted by a physician somewhere in the U.S. who is, effectively, being extorted. … These physicians are forced to either pay tens of thousands of dollars to for-profit evaluation/treatment centers or else lose their ability to practice medicine. … PHPs are now corporate entities with significant financial conflicts of interest that routinely refer doctors, no matter how unsupported or minor the concerns about them might be, to out-of-state evaluations at for-profit centers.


If the physician thinks that they’ve been referred inappropriately to their physician health program, they are basically out of luck because around the country there are generally no avenues of appeal once a PHP has made its “recommendation." Either do what the PHP tells you or the PHP will inform the board of medicine that you didn’t follow their directions [and] …the board generally yanks that physician’s license.

Doctors Pay Up or Else Don't Work

J. Wesley Boyd, MD, PhD

Psychology Today, 12/1/2019



"Physician, Interrupted"  

Prequel

Get the “Physician, Interrupted” prequel FREE!


While the content chapters are being incrementally posted on our blog of the same name, we know that physicians who are being ensnared in wrongful medical board, physician health program or sham peer review / performance evaluation proceedings need some guidance ...


RIGHT NOW!


What the majority of physicians don’t yet understand is that

missteps early in the process can not only be costly,

they may be irreparable.

  • This prequel offers immediate guidance to physicians, residents and med students who might be confronting these challenges.
  • Those who don’t yet know about these perils will get a much fuller picture of the perilous “Medical Regulatory Therapeutic Complex” (MRTC).
  • Whether you’re currently ensnared or know someone who is, or perhaps might even possibly face that prospect in the future, you really ought to grab this prequel.

Get

“Physician, Interrupted” 

prequel here


Tell us where to send the prequel.

You’ll immediately get the 18 page pdf, and we’ll notify you when “Physician, Interrupted" is available for purchase.



© Copyright April 12, 2022 by  Center for Physician Rights, Inc.

All Rights Reserved.