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Saving Your Clients from Jerks, Crooks and Malintents
(Apologies for the lists that no longer work in this post. In early summer 2014, About.com deleted almost 1000 posts and articles I had written. The points below are still valid, but I wanted you to know why the links may not produce what you expect.) I’m angry. And I’m appalled, too. And I think that you, as advocates, can be effective gatekeepers, guarding your client-patients from these kinds of providers. I’ve just finished blogging at About.com about two situations that have come to light recently. A third belongs here, too – from the general news. The story of an orthopedic surgeon who practices right in my own backyard, replacing and resurfacing hips. He has been accused (and has lost his job, and his hospital has been sanctioned) of waiting until his patients were anesthetized, then whacking them on the buttocks and calling them derogatory names. Yes, seriously. He has now left the hospital where all that took place, but has simply taken up residence in a hospital a few blocks away – meaning – he and his obnoxiousness are still performing surgeries everyday. What a jerk! (And – I have to wonder – how is it that he did hundreds of these surgeries and none of the other OR staff reported him? How did they sleep at night?) The story of a now-patient advocate whose wife died of bone cancer several years ago. She underwent spinal surgery and it went badly – very badly. The husband (who is now a member of APHA) tried to reach out to the surgeon after the surgery, but the surgeon refused to speak to him. So, on the suggestion of his counselor, the husband began to blog about his experience. Immediately, through her attorney, the surgeon asked him to remove the blog posts from the web, and he did. But a few years later, the surgeon sued him for defamation! I’m sorry, but any surgeon who would refuse to speak to the spouse of a patient who had suffered at her hands, and who would, years later, sue the husband for trying to…