For years, California allowed doctors who were arrested for drug and alcohol infractions, including DUIs, to conceal their arrests from patients. Such doctors, even if convicted, entered a “diversion” program that allowed them to keep practicing even if they violated the terms of the five-year program, and even if they failed drug tests during the program. Patients were in the dark.
Adam was 12 in 2008, when he went on a glorious camping and hiking trip in Yosemite with his Dad. The pair of them hiked, climbed and biked together. But seven days into the vacation, Adam died. He was a victim of preventable errors and inattention after an emergency appendectomy at a Modesto hospital.
A few days before Halloween, 7-year-old Jessie Geyer began to feel lousy. She had a high fever and severe leg pain. It was bad enough feeling sick, but the second grader worried that she might have to miss out on the Halloween parade at her school, as well as trick-or-treating.
Just before Christmas two years ago, John Enzenauer, 39, came home from his blue-collar job feeling lousy. He didn't worry much about it: Just a mild case of the flu, he figured. Two days after Christmas, he was dead, leaving this life in the middle of the night while the Christmas wrapping still lay strewn around the tree.
As told by Harry Jordan:
I was brought into surgery at Long Beach Hospital (where I was a Board Trustee) in late 1982 when x-rays revealed that my right kidney was cancerous. Unfortunately, the surgeons involved removed the wrong kidney. They took out the normal one. I then was transferred to UCLA Medical Center, where the cancerous kidney was removed.
Bill Mitchell, a former San Diego City Council member and deputy mayor, is a sophisticated man who thought he knew how to read people. But he now says ruefully that he was bamboozled by people in the medical profession and their insurers into thinking they had his wellbeing at heart when, in fact, they were concerned with the bottom line. Because he trusted them, he has lost sight in his left eye, and has no way to make those responsible pay.
HMO doctors, paid through Medicare, failed to provide medical tests to diagnose and treat heart disease in my mother over a two year period. The HMO physicians failed to respond to cardiogenic shock emergencies.