Ferguson and Canadian Death Panels  

Thrown (Ţâpat) in , , , , , , ,

I’ve two heavy things on my mind right now, and unlike WhatsApp frustrations, I don't think I'll be able to balance them with some happier, care-free thoughts. The second part of the title was inspired by a comment left by Blegoo about a year ago.

larry-reeceI’d rather not go into the Ferguson scandal, I’ve written about North American police in sheriff assaults Dr. Simona Tibu. Find the latest on Twitter, via #FergusonDecision.

However, what I’d like to suggest to you is a little thought experiment. Imagine that instead of a policeman shooting a black guy in USA, the Romanian police wrongfully beats up what we call a “tigan” or Gypsy in Romania (and is called a “Romanian” everywhere else outside Romania). Would anybody care?

Yes, I realize that in Ferguson police killed an unarmed black teenager who may have had his hands raised, but, as I have explained elsewhere here in this blog (see the Simona Tibu link above for starters), the police around here is far more violent and prone to killing than in Europe, so the parallel stands.

The second thing that’s on my mind is yet another cancer misdiagnosis in Canada, see the link in sources. Luckily, the man who had a “stage IV” cancer diagnosis was able to get a second (then third) opinion in the States and finally, after US doctors fought Canadian doctors over the course of a couple of months, he was cleared for cancer. To celebrate this milestone in his life, he got the tattoo you can see above. (That in itself can cause cancer: inbo-tattoo.)

This is on my mind because my relative was similarly diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer without presenting the symptoms that go with such an advanced stage – weight loss, etc – and, just like Larry Reece, was not a smoker. Just like Larry Reece, she or he was prescribed experimental chemotherapy (which the oncology section of that hospital was looking forward to homologate). Unlike Larry Reece, my relative was convinced by his spouse to forego getting a second opinion and went instead the “naturopathy” route, which included “natural chemotherapy” – i.e., uncontrolled poisons administered by his spouse, who, after his death, collected his life insurance payments and launched a claim against the estate that has been going on for over 10 years, effectively preventing me to look into the medical issues and take legal action.

Here’s a few more quotes from Wikipedia for anybody considering Canada for immigration due to its free/“amazing” healthcare system*.
  • The Canadian Medical Protective Association (CMPA) has also been criticized for defending medical malpractice suits extremely vigorously and turning down reasonable offers to settle claims to discourage other lawsuits on a number of occasions.[10] One judge reportedly referred to the CMPA as pursuing a "scorched earth policy." However, the CMPA's objectives include protecting the honour, character, and interests of its members. Accordingly, the Association will support its members in cases which are deemed "defensible". On the other hand, when the CMPA considers a case to be "indefensible," it assesses damages and negotiates settlements. Historically, between 20% and 30% of all cases are settled.
  • While few defamation cases go to trial, because of the deterrence value of threatened litigation, there can be negative consequences arising from the trial itself. Canadian defamation law permits broad latitude in argument and exempts, with absolute privilege, comment made by way of argument, even if the arguments or positions advanced are noxious, intimidating or astonishing, or amusing enough to be quoted widely in the press (true or not). Some noted Canadian lawyers have advised that every possible alternative to litigation should be employed by a client genuinely fearful of reputation loss, before filing suit, simply because the "scorched earth" tactic has become so common.
  • Critics argue that public money should not be used to defend doctors accused of negligence or other wrongdoing Civil trial lawyers fear that subsidies paid to fund the defence of doctors creates an unequal playing field for patients who hope to pursue a medical negligence case. They argue that the government is funding one side of a legal dispute, but not the other. Former Ontario Chief Justice Charles Dubin commented that: “Although it is in the public interest that any person charged with a criminal offence be properly represented, it seems difficult to justify public expenditures to place doctors on a different footing from other accused persons.”
  • One MD was charged in criminal court for sexually assaulting multiple patients, was convicted, then was sued by those victims in civil court. The CMPA funded the doctor's criminal defence, and later the CMPA funded the doctor's civil defence. The CMPA, however, will not pay civil damages to a patient assaulted by a doctor even if the assault occurred during a medical exam. This scenario is seen by critics as stacking the deck against victims attempting to seek redress from physicians.
  • In 2008, Ontario taxpayers spent $112 million to subsidize the medical malpractice fees paid by doctors. Doctors themselves paid $24 million, which means taxpayers picked up 83 percent of the cost of the malpractice fees. The subsidies paid to the CMPA are part of a "Memorandum of Understanding" between the Ontario Ministry of Health, the Ontario Medical Association, and the Canadian Medical Protective Association. Details of this Memorandum of Understanding between the parties were kept from public view until a court ordered it released following a Freedom of Information request in 2008.
  • Former CMPA executive director and CEO Dr. John Gray explained that while Ontario doctors’ invoices from the CMPA will rise dramatically, the provincial physician reimbursement program will be in effect. ‘‘So their out-of-pocket will be no different than they were in 2011/12. The money they pay to CMPA will increase, but they will be eligible to have much of that reimbursed.’’
  • In 2003, CBC News broadcast Inside the CMPA, the first in-depth look at the Canadian Medical Protective Association. Featured was former CMPA insider Paul Harte who broke with that organization and is now highly critical of it. Harte offered firsthand, material knowledge of the organization. The broadcast discussed five patients (Morgan Bystedt, Betty O’Reilly, Shannon Shobridge, Anne McSween, and Lorraine Emmonds) who suffered serious injury or death due to medical negligence. They were subjected to what some have described as deliberate wearing-down tactics from the CMPA. Lawyer Pete Mockler was quoted as saying, "...the CMPA fights them so hard… They basically take the view that anyone suing a doctor is in the extortion business."

    Paul Harte, along with former B.C. Supreme Court judge Thomas Berger, also spoke out in the CBC broadcast:

    "It is driven by protecting the doctor's reputation, almost at all costs. The CMPA would spend $100,000 protecting the doctor against a $5,000 claim. The CMPA may keep a low profile, but if you sue a doctor, it's almost always the Canadian Medical Protective Association running the show. Ninety-five percent of Canadian doctors are members. Just how far will the CMPA go to protect a doctor? The legal strategy is well worn: Deny the doctor did anything wrong, even when the negligence seems pretty clear. That's their strategy. It's coordinated across the country. It's intended to make these cases as difficult as possible for plaintiffs. The truth is, few plaintiffs – or their lawyers – survive the CMPA's suffocating tactics."

The above tactics essentially mean that when a “doctor” is “disciplined” or simply loses/settles malpractice litigation, that happens after they have maimed and killed hundreds if not thousands of patients – i.e., the evidence is so overwhelming, that even CMPA gets cold feet.

Here’s a quick sample of Canadian (mostly Ontario) doctors who got in trouble with either their College (the regulatory body) or the law.
  • Dr Errol Wai-Ping — an obstetrician-gynecologist who had amassed a multitude of patient complaints and lawsuits against him dating back to 1992 — lost his licence in 2004, pleading no contest before a disciplinary panel of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. The panel reviewed the cases of 47 women, including Escobar, and declared Wai-Ping incompetent in each case, noting his complication rate for some procedures was 20 times the provincial average. (oam-ts)
  • Dr. Mark Stewart ~ Debbie Maki was one of 22 abused patients who sued convicted molester Dr. Mark Stewart along with the College of Physicians and Surgeons. Said Maki: "There is a need to challenge a system that enables doctors to abuse patients without repercussion or reproach." Ultimately, Dr. Stewart was convicted of nine indecent assault charges and sentenced to four years federal time. The College never provided a tally of the complaints it amassed against Stewart during his 25-year practice, but records indicate police interviewed 60 patients before charging him with 76 sex crimes relating to his medical treatment. Stewart continued practicing and abusing patients long after Maki complained in 1994 to college officials. Stewart's civil legal fees as well as his criminal legal representation was covered by the Canadian Medical Protective Association.
  • Dr. Richard Austin ~ Joan Jaikaran is one of several women who filed million-dollar lawsuits against Dr. Richard Austin of The Scarborough Hospital, claiming her internal organs were inadvertently cut during surgery. There is no way to evaluate whether that number of lawsuits is unusual for an obstetrician-gynecologist. The Canadian Medical Protective Association doesn't disclose figures on lawsuits by medical specialty. As of 2007, there was no public transparency or accountability built into the system.
  • A Hamilton emergency room doctor who sexually assaulted two patients -- including one he made a pornographic movie of while she was unconscious-- lost his medical licence [a while back]. Dr Justice Onzuka was found to have sexually abused patients and engaged in disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional conduct. The discipline committee of the College of Physicians and Surgeons revoked his certificate as a result. (tsun-onzuka)
  • The failure of the college to strip Dr. Neale of his fellowship qualifications in obstetrics and gynecology has now emerged as a factor that helped Dr. Neale resume his professional practice in Britain even though he was barred from practising in Canada in 1985. The Royal College has acknowledged that in 1985 it was told that Dr. Neale had been banned from practising medicine by the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons for incompetence, after a woman died in a botched operation. Yet the Royal College failed to act on the information, accepting his fees and identifying him as a fellow in good standing until Dec. 3, 1999. "There were no specific sanctions taken at the time [in 1985] I don't have any explanation or reason why no action was taken," Dr. Michel Brazeau, the Royal College's chief executive officer, said in an interview from Ottawa. (tgm-neale)
  • Dr. Bernard Norman Barwin, a celebrated gynecologist, could lose his licence if the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario discipline panel finds he committed misconduct. He agreed last year to stop the practice of insemination after the college filed its notice of hearing. The medical college alleges that three of Barwin’s patients discovered their children aren’t biologically related to their husband or, in one case, the patient’s chosen donor. Two women with the same allegations sued Barwin a few years ago. The lawsuits were resolved last year, but neither the women’s lawyer nor Barwin’s lawyer could discuss the terms. Barwin was invested in the Order of Canada in 1997 for his “profound impact on both the biological and psycho-social aspects of women’s reproductive health.” (mn-barwin)
  • Dr. Roland Wong (Dr “Robin Hood”) was found guilty of professional misconduct in December 2012 after exaggerating the allergies of his welfare-dependent patients so they could access special diet allowances of up to $250 per month — a practice that saw him bill the government for $1.8 million over four years. He was paid about $60 to fill out each patient’s forms, the college panel heard, collecting $718,000 in 2008 alone. The doctor landed in trouble in 2009, when an auditor general’s report alleged he was filling out the forms without confirming patients’ dietary restrictions or allergies. That report noted the cost of special diet allowances in Ontario had risen to $67 million from just $5 million in 2003, prompting concerns that the system was being widely abused.
  • For the third time, a Toronto paediatrician has had his medical license suspended or revoked. The College of Physician and Surgeons of Ontario last month suspended Dr. Eleazar Noriega’s licence for six months for violating an order not to be alone with female patients and for failing to post signs warning of the restriction. Noriega, whose troubles with the regulatory body date back a decade, had conditions placed on his licence in 2009, following a third accusation of sexual misconduct. But during a subsequent investigation, a college inspector found the required signs were not present in his Yonge and Davisville office. She also found that Noriega continued to see female patients alone, despite a requirement that a chaperone be present. What’s more, a disciplinary committee accepted that he misled the college inspector by denying that he saw female patients in a consultation room. In 2004, Noriega’s license was suspended for nine months after he was found to have committed an act of professional misconduct by sexually abusing a17-year-old patient. Four years later, he faced a similar charge involving a 9-year-old girl, but a disciplinary committee ruled that the allegation had not been proven. Noriega’s licence was revoked in 2011 after a disciplinary committee ruled against him in a case involving a 15-year-old patient and an allegation of sexual impropriety. But he appealed the case and the Ontario Divisional Court ordered a new hearing. Hearing dates have been scheduled for March and April next year. Noriega, through his wife, Lucy, has always maintained his innocence, suggesting he was being discriminated against by the college because he was born in Mexico. (inbo-noriega)
  • A leading Canadian expert in bariatric surgery pleaded no contest yesterday to accusations that he sexually abused female patients over nearly a decade, leading a disciplinary committee of the College of Physicians and Surgeons to revoke his medical licence effective immediately. Dr. Jacobo Joffe, a Toronto surgeon who provided weight-loss operations to obese patients, engaged in concurrent and continuing sexual relationships with four patients, including a pair of twin sisters, taking "advantage of the patients' vulnerable position," according to Carolyn Silver, a lawyer representing the CPSO. (tgm-joffe)
  • An Ontario anesthesiologist involved in the botched liposuction surgery that led to the death of Krista Stryland has lost his licence. A disciplinary committee of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario ruled Wednesday that Dr. Bruce Liberman should have his licence revoked, effective immediately. Liberman will also have to face a public reprimand at a future date and pay the college $62,000 in hearing costs within six months. In the 35-page decision, the five-member committee said Liberman abdicated responsibility for Stryland during the time she was in his care. Calling the case “one of the most serious or most egregious” it has seen, the committee said revoking Liberman’s licence is warranted because of his “serious and repeated acts of professional misconduct in his care of Ms Stryland, his profound lack of judgment, his incompetence, his dishonesty, and his lack of insight.” It said taking away Liberman’s licence — the college’s most severe penalty — is necessary “to maintain public confidence in the medical profession.” (dahn-usacan)
  • A psychiatrist who worked at the Yarmouth Regional Hospital has lost his licence for sexual misconduct with his patients. Dr. Bolarinwa Olutosin Oluwole had sexual intercourse with two female patients and acted inappropriately with another female patient, the College of Physicians and Surgeons said in a news release Thursday. Also Thursday, the college gave notice that Truro surgeon Dr. Martin Dzieranowski has been restricted from performing major surgeries. Grant could not provide details about the reasons for that restriction, which he called an interim sanction. The college is investigating a matter involving Dzieranowski and “this is a decision that is justified by a concern for public safety.” The surgeon is restricted from performing any surgery requiring conscious sedation or general anasthesia. He is allowed to continue his office practice and may continue to do endoscopy, the college said. (tch-oluwole)
  • As a psychiatrist, Dr. Frank Gordon Johnson worked in Ontario but while there, his licence to practice in that province was permanently revoked in 1993 after it was determined that he drugged and repeatedly sexually assaulted two of his patients The Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons had determined that Johnson was guilty of medical incompetence and sexual impropriety, and for this reason, the College declared him “unfit to continue in practice”. Now what I find most disturbing is that when he then moved to Victoria, B.C, no one there chose to seriously consider his past as a psychiatrist in Ontario. If they had, surely he wouldn’t have been permitted to practice in B.C. or work as a psychiatrist at the Eric Martin Pavilion psychiatric hospital in Victoria as an employee let alone as its chief psychiatrist. If they were really concerned about his past indiscretions in Ontario and still gave him a licence to practice in B.C., then the shame falls on the medical authorities in that province who turned a blind eye towards his past. Who in his right mind would hire a psychiatrist who was convicted of administrating drugs into two of his female patients that put them into a ‘zombie-like’ state so that he could repeatedly sexually abuse them? (dahn-usacan)

Dahn Batchelor is a retired criminologist who worked with and also collected evidence against doctors in both Canada and USA.

In an article on his blog, Mr Batchelor, he compares the two regulatory systems.
  • In the U.S. the license to practice medicine is granted independently by each state. The degree "Doctor of Medicine" (M.D.) or "Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine" (D.O.) is granted by a college or university with an accredited medical school. Therefore, if a doctor loses his licence, loses his authorization to practice in that particular state, not his title or degree. I believe that the same would apply in Canada and other countries.
  • Ontario doctors lose their licence to practice for a variety of reasons which are generally — medical incompetence, sexually abusing a patient and OHIP (Ontario Hospital Insurance Plan) fraud.
  • Medical boards don't release statistics on how many active licensees are convicted felons. A Post-Dispatch analysis of Missouri and Illinois records identifies at least eight felons who either regained their license or never lost it. They include doctors convicted of possession of child pornography, false imprisonment, dealing drugs, child endangerment, persistent drunken driving, mail fraud and leaving the scene of a fatal car crash.
  • For sex abuse of a patient, there is a mandatory licence ban of five years in the Province of Ontario as stipulated by the Regulated Health Professions Act. There is no offence for which there is a permanent licence ban — though in at least one case, the College denied reinstatement and recommended a permanent revocation of the licence.
  • The dean of the Global College at the University of Winnipeg, McPhedran chaired the College of Physician’s groundbreaking task force that recommended zero tolerance principles for sex abuse in 1991; she also led a review of the implementation of the law 10 years later. As of 2009, McPhedran says her research continued to conclude that doctors who had their licences revoked for sexual abuse should not be allowed to be reinstated.
  • Later this month, Toronto pediatrician Dr. Jeffrey Seidman will also attend a reinstatement hearing. The former member of a sexual assault team at a Scarborough hospital had his licence revoked nine years ago after he sexually abused a 15-year-old patient, a girl he first saw when she was 12 to treat for depression and an eating disorder.
  • I am afraid that our Colleges of Physicians and Surgeons in Canada are in need of revamping. They are supposed to protect the public more than the doctors they govern. Is their treatment of bad doctors any different than having your six-year-old child govern your four-year-old when the latter has his or her hand in the cookie jar?  Are the Americans doing any better?

My relative was doing quite alright with all his or her “cancer”, until a massive dose of radiation for “palliative” reasons transformed her or him into a barely walking skeleton. Euthanasia against his or her will during the SARS crisis was easy to “pass through” (it was supervised by an MD by phone and performed by a nurse) because (s)he had been so demolished by radiation that nobody would give him or her any hope, and everyone assumed it was cancer killing him or her. I was prevented to enter the hospital by armed guards, despite having power of attorney for personal care done with a lawyer.

Even if (s)he had cancer and had accepted chemotherapy, it is unlikely that chemotherapy would’ve done much, considering that for many years, it had been highly diluted (PDF, ts, inbo).

*…Or come to Canada, and hope you never go to the doctor.

*(*This article is unfinished – it was scheduled to appear in the hope that it will be finished before, but since this message is here and until it is removed, the article is to be considered work in progress*)*.

Sources / More info: inbo-lreece, wiki-sarcoidosis, wiki-cndef, wiki-cmpa, dahn-usacan, tgm-joffe, tsun-onzuka, tch-oluwole, inbo-malpractice, mn-barwin, oam-ts, int-mal, mcl-trust, opmed-chars, tgm-neale

Thank you for reading (mulţam fain pentru cetire)! Publicat Thursday, November 27, 2014 . Similar articles under the following categories (poţi găsi articole similare sub următoarele categorii): (Subscribe), (Subscribe), (Subscribe), (Subscribe), (Subscribe), (Subscribe), (Subscribe), (Subscribe) . Dacă ţi-a plăcut articolul, PinIt-uieste-l, ReddIt-eaza-l, stumble-uieste-l altora, trimite-l pe WhatsApp yMess şi consideră abonarea la fluxul RSS sau prin email. Ma poti de asemenea gasi pe Google. Trackback poateputea fi trimis prin URL-ul de sub Comentarii.
Aici vei găsi ştiri inedite, articole hazoase, perspective originale in politică, societate, economie şi relaţii interumane. QUESTIONS (Intrebări)? We got Answers (Răspunsuri există)!  
blog comments powered by Disqus