|Article Type:||Letter to the editor|
|Author:||Lemonick, David M.|
|Publication:||Name: Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons Publisher: Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Inc. Audience: Academic Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Health care industry Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2008 Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Inc. ISSN: 1543-4826|
|Issue:||Date: Winter, 2008 Source Volume: 13 Source Issue: 4|
Three cheers to Dr. Eugene F. Diamond! (1) His courage, his
dedication, and his willingness to put his career at risk for the sake
of patients made for a hair-raising and illuminating account of the
inner workings of one large health center.
When I became the victim of a label-then-kill "witch hunt" in my hospital, it was Dr. Lawrence Huntoon who reached out to me (through my attorney) to let me know that I was not alone. Since that time, I have learned a great deal about how the "disruptive physician" method is used regularly and with virtual impunity by hospitals for their selfish agendas against physicians. The targeted physicians are those who: advocate too often or too vociferously for patient well-being; are economic competitors; antagonize, question, or undermine the existing power structure; or cast their hospitals in an unfavorable light, expose the hospitals' flaws publicly, or engender political and personal animosity with the hospital.
In placing patient welfare above the interests of physicians and the hospital, a physician engages in a game of virtual Russian roulette. And once a physician has been forced to turn in his keys, ID badge, and parking card, and has been escorted off the hospital property, there is little remedy available. It is a lonely and scary position to be in.
The fiduciary relationship with our patients requires that we always choose what is best for the patient instead of what is best for ourselves or for our hospitals. To do otherwise is immoral, unethical, and unprofessional. Dr. Diamond is truly heroic to have done the right thing despite the potential personal and professional consequences.
Gen. Emiliano Zapata was right to say: "I'd rather die on my feet than live on my knees."
Thank you, Dr. Diamond and Dr. Huntoon for your courage and support, and for revealing the truth about sham peer review.
(1) Diamond EF Confessions of a "disruptive influence." J Am Phys Surg 2008;13:91-92.
David M. Lemonick, M.D.
|Gale Copyright:||Copyright 2008 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.|