The “Impaired Physician”–Increasing the grand scale of the hunt

“Wretched creatures are compelled by the severity of the torture to confess things they have never done and so by cruel butchery innocent lives are taken; and by new alchemy, gold and silver are coined from human blood.”  Father Cornelius Loos  ( 1592 )


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How Impaired Physicians Can be Helped–Medscape Business of Medicine Article Published February 24, 2015. Click on image to access


How can impaired Physicians be helped?

1.   Impairment among physicians is growing:  Why?  

Answer:  It is not.   State Physician Health Programs (PHPs) are “diagnosing” impairment when there is no impairment.  They are pathologizing the normal and expanding in scope to increase the grand scale of the hunt.

2.  What’s the Prognosis for Impaired Physicians?

Answer:  Not Good.   Those who need help (the truly impaired)  are afraid to get help for fear of being monitored by their state PHP while many of those ensnared by PHPs are not impaired.   There is absolutely no oversight, regulation or accountability.  This needs to be evaluated in the context of physician suicide.    The system is one of institutional injustice and abuse of power. 

3.  Is your knowledge of physician impairment up-to-date?  

Answer:   No.  This will only occur after an evidence-based Cochrane type review separates information from misinformation; An objective non-biased investigation by outside actors identifying any conflicts-of-interest, misconduct or lack of evidence-base in the current system and separating the art and science of the medical profession from the politicalization and exploitation of the medical profession.

The list of doctors on Like-Minded Docs  solves the final piece of a  puzzle. It explains why so many doctors across the country are claiming fabrication and manipulation of personality and cognitive tests to support nonexistent diagnoses at these “PHP-approved” assessment centers.    The relationship between the state PHP’s and the “PHP-approved” assessment centers is the same as it is between the state PHPs and the corrupt labs.

As Drs. John Knight and J. Wesley Boyd note in Ethical and Managerial Considerations Regarding State Physician Health Programs, published in the Journal of the American Society of Addiction Medicine,  this is what is known as “tailoring a diagnosis”–a euphemism for the political abuse of psychiatry.  According to the Global Initiative on Psychiatry “Political abuse of psychiatry refers to the misuse of psychiatric diagnosis, treatment and detention for the purposes of obstructing the fundamental human rights of certain individuals and groups in a given society.”   The shoe fits here.  In fact it fits very well.

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The Global Initiative on Psychiatry opposes the Political_Abuse_of_Psychiatry  wherever  it may occur and “supports those psychiatrists and psychiatric organizations that pressure the offending states to discontinue the practice and lobby vigorously those organizations which are wavering. The main way for individuals and organizations to work is through diplomatic channels. It is necessary to expose the practice and to embarrass countries that are at fault by expelling them from organizations such as the World Psychiatric Association. This can only be ensured by properly organized open investigation of psychiatric practice and interviews with the alleged victims”

Political abuse of psychiatry in the profession of medicine needs to be treated in the same way.

An evidence based Cochrane type assessment of their “research” and an Institute of Medicine Conflict of Interest review are long overdue.

In evaluating a physician for “impairment” or being “disruptive” the Physician Health Programs (PHPs)  under the Federation of State Physician Health Programs (FSPHP)  are not gathering data to form a hypothesis.  They are making data fit a hypothesis that arrived at the out-of-state “PHP-approved” assessment center well before the alleged miscreant doctor.

With guilt assumed from the start, no due process, no appeal, and no way out physicians are being bullied, demoralized, and dehumanized  to the point of hopelessness, helplessness and despair.

This needs to end now.

Medicine is predicated on competence, good-faith, and integrity. 

Medical ethics necessitates beneficence, respect, and autonomy. 

The scaffold erected here is designed for coercion and control. 

Exposure, transparency, and accountability are urgent. 

The emperor has no clothes.

Sunshine is the best disinfectant.

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18 thoughts on “The “Impaired Physician”–Increasing the grand scale of the hunt

  1. Reblogged this on Center for Physician Advocacy and commented:
    Dr. Langan’s incisive critique of the Medscape shill article is right on target. PHPs with their denial of due process and prearranged diagnoses at “preferred treatment centers” need investigation not only for validating the stated efficacy of their methodology, thy need objective investigation for their pervasive abuse of power and violation of law.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I certainly agree that this pre assessment diagnosis is what happens. I know it did in my case. After my “assessment”,just as they all planned,I was more or less forced to return for the 3 mo expected treatment. On day 2,I ended up in a severe medical problem. I was sent to an acute care hospital and had emergency surgery the next day. 8 days later I went home for a lengthy recovery. When PHS reassessed(so to speak) they to me I needed to go back to that rehab. Rather than do such a thing,I retired.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m no doctor but I am a recovering alcoholic with 16 years sobriety and what I’m reading about how physicians who may have drug and/or alcohol addiction are being treated is so disturbing. Addiction is a very cruel and a very personal illness that affects its victims right down to their souls. Recovery just can’t happen through force. People trying to overcome addiction need to feel safe. They need to be with people they trust. And above all their privacy needs to be respected. I don’t think I’d be alive today if my attempt at sobriety had been forcibly administered under an Orwellian regime with Big Brother breathing down my neck. Nobody can really reach out to an alcoholic/addict unless they have lived through their own battles with this disease.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. This Disrupted Physician website is very interesting. References to witchcraft trials and perhaps Franz Kafka’s book THE TRIAL are most appropriate. Careful examination of PHP referrals shows a greater number of cases, and probably greater associated revenues associated with PHP evaluations on normal, healthy physician victims of sham peer reviews. They are allegedly “disruptive” or framed as “personality problems”, and more commonly seen at PHP than over addicted physician cases. I think that treatments and monitoring for nonsmoking, nondrinking, drug free healthy docs who were in the cross hairs of toxic administrators or competitors outnumber referrals for addictions in recent years. In my case, I was suspended from hospital infectious diseases work wrongfully and suddenly for 10 days some two months after an unexpected death from C difficile colitis. The patient was well and ambulatory when I signed off but developed GI bleeding the day afterwards and died 5 days after I left town and signed off of the case. In a scapegoat peer review 60 days after death, using wrong dates of service, Administrator charged me for negligent histories and physicals for the days I was away. Real reasons? Administrator was mad from the previous year when I challenged unvalidated ABMS MOC (trademark) retesting programs for already Board certified diplomates in our Medical Staff Bylaws. Administration and an agressive lead pharmacist also did not want infectious diseases doctors to challenge an unusual vancomycin pharmacy protocol which required daily vancomycin blood level determinations even with stable renal function. With legal immunity from discovery since 1986, toxic hospital adminstrators and C (corporate)-suite executives use hospital attorneys to bury independent thinking “uppity” doctors who believe in science and medical evidence in addition to economic costs when we care for our patients. C suite black suits may abuse their power and send innocents into the web of PHP for endless personality tests and studies, costing much time and about $5000/ evaluation, keeping the doctor out of hospital practice (“guilty until proven innocent”), bullied and beaten down, and unable to pursue due process until the PHP trolls complete their reports. The entire process took 4 months in my case for clearance from PHP and 2 months after the hospital administrator submitted fabricated charges to NPDB (Data Bank) for BORM to close my case. God bless our BORM, they stopped the C Suite witch hunts and dropped all hospital charges against me. I was fortunate that my good hospital staff, my colleagues, and internal and external expert witnesses supported my standards of excellent medical care throughout the trials. As an epidemiologist, I suspected conflicting motives from PHP when they would not in good faith reveal the number of physician suicides by year, by specialty Board certification status, grandfathered or MOC (trademark), by PHP engagement, and by other risk factors. If data unknown, why did PHP psychiatrists not use their resources to study the problem? We physician victim survivors need to help others so bullied by external circumstances not only to improve in public relations and communications at the work site, as advocated by PHP, but also understand that, as Rabbi Kushner said, Bad Things Happen To Good People. PHP and our business executive coaches help us communicate better in difficult circumstances. PHP also ought to help victims become empowered to fight nefarious circumstances hurting patient care more effectively. PS. The medical hospital administrator lost his position 2 years after this and about 15 other similar altercations with the medical staff doctors.

    Liked by 3 people

    • It does Kathy- it is sad there are so few with the courage to speak- if even a fraction of them did this could end quickly. I understand fear but that’s how they are winning. Nothing will change if we do not mobilize, resist and take back the profession of medicine. It is shameful.


      • Please remember there is a time when people in these situations can’t speak publicly. To the length the silence is administered depends on the state you live in. The victims silence in many of these cases are bought at a high price along with a non-disclosure statement. The days of when going to a doctor as a child, mimicked by the goose pimples much like seeing a favorite rock star are long gone. Doctors no longer listen to state boards, governors, senators, and most certainly not their patients. They follow the strict instructions of their malpractice insurance company! Fact! As for board of ethics, that term has been twisted to suit their needs much like the word “egregious”. How could you possibly change the definition of egregious? Somehow, “they” have. If one chooses to battle the medical world be prepared to meet an incestuous mafia type situation. Be prepared to be called insane. Be prepared to be called overly aggressive. Be prepared to be called slanderous. Be prepared to be isolated. The Hippocratic Oath, what is that?(sarcasm font) If you try to be and “Advocate” for your own health or loved one, you will be met with resistance “What do you know? I AM THE DOCTOR” If you are an advocate for a child, be prepared to have security called on you and CPS if you resist the doctors decision. It is no longer an open discussion for mutually agreed upon treatment, it is a dictators rule. If you choose to battle the medical system, be prepared they do what they can to drive you insane. The day of teaching HUMAN doctors SOAP : Subjective, Objective, Assessment, and Plan are long gone over 10 years ago. The Subjective is punched into a digital formulary now. The Objective and Assessment are totally disregarded and the Plan is then spit out by the handheld machine. Then the all the bad cooks come into the kitchen with to many changes to the recipe, because we now allow people to practice medicine with out deductive reasoning. They run around getting distracted by all the pretty lights. It must be the blue one, no I think it is the red one, no wait it is not blue I think it is teal. This leads me to “Differential Diagnosis” There should only and always be 3, let me repeat that 3. Based on history and exam prioritizing 1.2.and 3… 4,5,6,7 ect. The official term is called “Chasing Zebras” if you run outside the time tested ” One of the top 3 of your differential diagnosis is your answer”. Then take those 3 answers, swallow your”know it all attitude” and never ever be such a self righteous doctor, that does not consult with an expert in the field of that medicine outside your assigned “group”! That brings me back to the malpractice insurance companies. Unless you are an independent doctor, your treatment is governed by your company’s insurance company, not your Hippocratic Oath. We are fighting the ugliest evils of all “GREED”. Medical is a money making machine. They don’t care about you, your mom, your dad, your child. Don’t take it personal they simply care about the bottom dollar, not the casualties of war. Don’t even think that being an elite, will protect you. No, look at the doctors that treated Michael Jackson and Prince. What? If any, was their consequences for their actions? This has been a deep rooted systemic disease of its own and has malignancy that spreads through all the systems of the body for years. What is the cure? Radiation? I do not know, but their is a BIG problem here. Wow, this long and coming from a person that knows no one reads anymore. Sigh. Thanks people for taking the time to read this.

        Liked by 1 person

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