HUZZAH! and Ding, dong, the witch is dead!

It’s TRUE–”Dr.” Eric Keroack has resigned!

The Townhall news article is here

The head of the federal office responsible for providing women with access to contraceptives and counseling to prevent pregnancy resigned unexpectedly Thursday after Medicaid officials took action against him in Massachusetts…

“Yesterday, Dr. Eric Keroack alerted us to an action taken against him by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ Office of Medicaid. As a result of this action I accepted his resignation,” Dr. John Agwunobi, assistant secretary for health, said in a terse statement Thursday evening.

The plot thickens. Is this really that much better than “no comment”? I can’t wait to hear the rest of the story as it unfolds. I can’t find many articles on this topic, but as I do, I’ll be posting here.

For now, let’s all just breathe a sigh of relief as Mr. Pseudoscience gets some of his power taken away.

7 comments to HUZZAH! and Ding, dong, the witch is dead!

  • minx

    Yes, let the celebrations begin!

  • Sc00ter

    I vote for strip club.. :)

  • Thank the Goddess he’s gone. Would be nice to find out just what this action being taken against him is.

    I’m praying that a responsible professional with real world common sense is appointed as his replacement, not some stealth Bush halfwit appointee.

  • Hooray and huzzah! :)
    Hm, wonder what this action against him is…

  • CrispnCrunch

    Remember, this position is not a congressional appointment. The burning bush can appoint anyone he pleases. (worse luck).

    What worries me (as an external observer – being an ozzie) is wondering how many other appointments like this piece of philosophical nepotism have been made without anyone noticing.

    Especially as these appointments can (and, in many cases, will) outlast GWB’s “reign is sillyness”

  • Crispncrunch

    The AP report seemed to have the most content.

    I was able to find some real (non-hype) information about Dr Keroack.
    – He is a graduated Medical Doctor (MD) and is registerred with the medical board in MASS.
    – He has practiced as an OB/GYN (although he is not currently registerred as one – actually he is recertified now – since Monday :-))
    – He is a speaker on pregnancy and abortion.
    – He as presented papers at (at least) two Abstinence Leadership conferences.
    – He is (at least partially) responsible for providing ultrasound imaging systems to pregnancy counciling services.
    – He has (unpublished) research into how showing ultrasound pictures of a woman’s growing feotus decreases the likelihood of abortion.

    I also found a great deal of misinformation (from both sides) and a lot of hysteria (predominantly from Pro-Choice campaigners)

    His 2003 presentation is no-longer available online, and all I have been able to find was an older presentation on Oxytocin (the_oxytocin_cell_k[1].c._talkrevised.ppt)
    This presentation shows deplorably poor presentation skills and a lack of understanding of biological chemistry and neuro-pharmacology. It doesn’t however contain anything disasterous or noteworthy except that he links Opiate release with Oxitocin inhibition.

    You can read into it where he would be taking his research :-(.

    To steal a phrase from “Chess” – “The man is mad, utterly mad”. He has gone from A to B to D to F# to 6. His last to “logical deductions” are unsupported by evidence and do not even follow the same research track! I guess I pity the man to be so easily derailed.

    BTW:
    His Doctor’s Profile from the Massachusetts Medical board can be found here:
    (http://profiles.massmedboard.org/MA-Physician-Profile-View-Doctor.asp?ID=19730)

  • Today’s Boston Globe (April 7) has more:
    http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2007/04/07/doctor_who_quit_us_post_was_warned_by_state/

    Here’s much of the text:
    —————————————-

    Doctor who quit US post was warned by state; Medical board cited prescriptions

    By Andrea Estes, Globe Staff | April 7, 2007

    Two months before he resigned from a top federal family planning position, Marblehead gynecologist Eric Keroack received two formal warnings from the Massachusetts board of medicine ordering him to refrain from prescribing drugs to people who are not his patients and from providing mental health counseling without proper training.

    Keroack resigned last week as head of the US Office of Population Affairs, which is responsible for providing low-income women with access to contraceptives, after he was notified that the state’s Medicaid office had launched an investigation into his private practice. The office, whose investigations generally focus on Medicaid fraud, declined to provide specifics about what it is investigating but confirmed there was a pending case dating back a “few years.”

    The warnings from the Board of Registration in Medicine stem from a complaint filed in May 2005 by the daughter of one of Keroack’s patients, who said he overmedicated her mother, prescribing several powerful psychotherapeutic drugs, and “brainwashed” her into thinking she was “severely depressed.”

    The daughter, whose name was withheld, also said Keroack gave her parents money and presents, and allegedly issued a fraudulent prescription for the anti depressant Zoloft to her sister — who had insurance — when their uninsured mother became unable to pay for the prescription herself.

    In his response to the board, Keroack acknowledged that he had switched the prescription, saying that he had recently given the complainant’s sister several free samples of Zoloft. With the prescription in hand, he said, the sister would then be able to pass the samples on to his patient. He said it was like “killing two birds with stone.”

    He also acknowledged giving the patient money and presents, but denied overstepping the patient-doctor boundary, as alleged in the complaint.

    “I am guilty of being generous to a fault in the care of this couple and their family,” said Keroack, who has a degree from the Tufts University School of Medicine.

    “It seems that being aware of the dynamics in a family that I have taken care of for over 12 years has somehow been interpreted to be atypical, abnormal, and a violation of boundaries,” he wrote the board. “This is a sad reflection on the state of what is considered normal within today’s medical care system. In my opinion, it does not serve a patient’s best interest to whisk them in and out of an office visit in 15-20 minutes, learning nothing about their actual every day life.”

    President Bush appointed Keroack — a doctor known for his anti abortion work and advocacy for abstinence programs — to lead the federal government’s family planning efforts in November, triggering an immediate outcry from abortion-rights activists. He had been on the job less than five months when he announced his resignation last week.

    In the 2005 complaint, the patient’s daughter, who had once been Keroack’s patient, alleged that the doctor gave her mother money for groceries, evenings out with her husband, and a Cape Cod getaway for the couple. “What MD does this???” the daughter wrote the board of medicine in writing.

    But she seemed most upset by a letter he had recently sent urging her to make peace with her parents, who had both been diagnosed with cancer.

    Using exclamation points, all-capitalized sentences, and quotes from country singer Randy Travis, Keroack urged his patient’s daughter to make up with her mother “before it’s too late to fix it.” “If either of your parents were to die tomorrow . . . . YOU and ONLY you will be responsible for the losses that will surely follow,” wrote the gynecologist, now 47.

    In her complaint to the board, the daughter wrote: “I haven’t been able to sleep; I am upset all of the time because I cannot get over the fact the he would have the audacity to send me such an invasive, unethical letter.”

    Keroack could not be reached yesterday for comment. But in a 13-page letter to the board, he called the charges — of insurance fraud, distributing medication to nonpatients, and behaving unprofessionally or unethically — “patently false.”

    …Doctors are barred from doing anything that oversteps the clear boundary between doctor and patient. “That can be a lot of things,” explained board spokesman Russell Aims, “anything from a psychiatrist having sessions at the patient’s home or a doctor driving a patient someplace after an appointment to loans, personal gifts, favors.”

    The second letter warned Keroack to conform to the state’s prescribing practices. “You should familiar[ize] yourself with the Board’s policy and adhere to the guidelines to avoid problems in the future. You may not prescribe to individuals who are not your patients,” the letter said.

    A warning is not considered disciplinary action, which would be reported to federal authorities, Aims said. Keroack came under heavy criticism from abortion rights advocates for his connection to crisis-pregnancy centers that show ultrasound images of fetuses to pregnant women in an effort to dissuade them from having abortions.

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