The “Impaired Physician Movement” takeover of state Physician Health Programs (PHPs).

Disrupted Physician


“The impaired physician movement is characterized by a number of evangelical recovered alcoholic and addict physicians, whose recovery has been accompanied by an involvement in medical society and treatment programs. Their ability to make authoritative pronouncements on physician impairment is based on their own claim to insider’s knowledge.”–G.V. Stimson  (1)

Forget what you see; Some things they just change invisibly–Elliott Smith (Between the Bars)


Physician Impairment

The Sick Physician: Impairment by Psychiatric Disorders, Including Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, published by the American Medical Association’s (AMA) Council on Mental Health in The Journal of the American Medical Association in 1973, (2)  recommended that physicians do a better job of helping colleagues impaired by mental illness, alcoholism or drug dependence. The AMA defined an “impaired physician” as “a physician who is unable to practice medicine with reasonable skill and safety to patients because of mental illness or excessive use or…

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8 thoughts on “The “Impaired Physician Movement” takeover of state Physician Health Programs (PHPs).

  1. And if you are practically a tea totaler, well, that’s not going to stop NC Medical Board from using its hit man North Carolinas Physician’s Health program NCPHP to send you off to Pine Grove Recover Center, and you will pay and you will spend 3 months and you will be treated as an alcoholic or drug addict and you will participate in the 12 step program , attend all AA and Cadeuseus meetings, and for good measure ,we’ll also make you attend sex therapy- because you had a one-year subsciption to “Playboy magazine” year years ago. Comply Dr Karl W Hubbard or we will report you to the NC Medical Board and you will lose your license. Never mind that we later hired your neighborhood (literally, lived on my street) neurosurgeon , a 3 time NC washout cocaine and narcotics addict, to later work at this facility as an “addictionologist, or when we sent you back to Albemarle Hospital, Elizabeth City, NC after your three months are up to try to salvage your career and your life, your replacement orthopedic surgeon will turn out to have been the alcoholic all along!

    And why can’t anyone read any of my Google reviews on the hospital? Because they have been shadow banned by Google! My book My Medical Legal Back Pages is swept into the dustbin. No need for any cease and desist, lawsuits for libel, or any form of response from the NCMB or NCPHP. They don’t want to dig up what really went on, or that cozy financial relationships between PHPs and Medical Boards, an egregious one in particular, were mentioned in a NC State Audit of NCPHP.

    The bottom line, state PHPs and their ability to refer to treatment centers are very fertile ground for hospital administrators to exile physicians. All three NC Medical Board appointed experts in three different evaluations had opined that no behavioral or drug therapy was indicated for me. (Bottom line, they knew I was being screwed, but they couldn’t admit that in such blunt terms to the ultimate referral source, the NCMB, after all, the NCMB had launched a righteous crusade against the disruptive physician and needed poster child examples. Former Albemarle Administrator Sharon Tanner, her accomplices Edward Eadie, MD chief of surgery, and Ralph Battles MD , and chief of staff at the time, also had histories of physically assaulting nurses.


    • I’m gripped c fear, anger, and at times, helplessness re: the future of my son’s career and more importantly, his life (literally). ‘Our’ nightmare of rehab ruin began in 2018. He was visited (in an acute care hospital for God’s sake) by a PHP cult member and intimidated, threatened with The Big Bad Board into signing his life away for 5 years. He’s not weak but he is a trusting, non aggressive, compliant, gentle soul. A dream come true for the rehab industry.
      Thank God I got his med records- He went along with everything they said, even if it wasn’t the truth! Anyway, the acute care intake doc took him off the ER mandated 10-13 immed. (he was deeply depressed but not suicidal and the last ditch effort to get him relief, Ketamine infusions and nasal spray, were worthless. Worse, his employer, who knew him well, didn’t bother to intervene).
      The doc noted C had no s/s of withdrawal. After 6 days he was ‘d/c to home’. Except he wasn’t. The d/c note was changed to ‘bipolar’, ‘alcohol use’ and
      ‘f/u c (the nearby rehab facility)’. He doesn’t drink. The rehab place was not a duel diagnosis facility. We didn’t know better!
      We didn’t know to get an (out of town) atty as if that would’ve mattered. Btw, the previous narrative recounts only one week of C’s ‘adventure’-
      The two atty(s) he consulted with were a lot of talk – they ‘know a board member’ or are wired with the rehab system, the PHP or had a lot of experience with licensing issues. One took over $1000
      to shoot off a couple letters to the PHP, another charged $550 for a consult, kept over 1G of the retainer and then wrote a letter a week later saying (it) couldn’t take the case. By the way, the license is in ‘inactive’ status.
      Big. Deal. Oh, and C has been voluntarily getting random d/s at a certified lab – all negative by the way.
      I’ve just scratched the surface in my state, mostly in an effort to get legal help. I’m thinking there’s something in the drinking water on the eastern seaboard that targets medical boards and the rehab system. You think I’m on to something? Insert B-I-G E-Y-E
      R-O-L-L here.
      I hope your book is on Amazon.

      Oh, P.S. Did the AMA or whoever gives new specialty names to docs, ever approve “addictionologist” as a specialty? Last year there was no such thing but that didn’t stop the self-proclaimed docs from taking a patient off of all their meds and constantly telling them they’re addicts and always will be and will never work around controlled substances again, yabba-dabba-doo. A lot of pots calling a lot of kettles black n’est ce pas?

      Liked by 1 person

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