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Doctors Behaving Badly: Sixty-somethings, beware of this inappropriate internist with a secret past

Doctors Behaving Badly: Sixty-somethings, beware of this inappropriate internist with a secret past

Picture of William Heisel

At what age is a woman no longer at risk with a doctor who has been disciplined for "inappropriate conduct" with female patients?

The Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners sets the age limit at 60.

Antidote can only guess, but it seems reasonable to assume that few women aged 60 or older would want to be left alone in a room with a doctor who has been ordered to have a chaperone nearby for every female patient aged zero to 59.

This is the restriction that has been placed on the license of Dr. Sanjay Raina of Slidell, Louisiana. (Antidote added this case to the this morning.) Raina is certified in internal medicine and has been licensed in Louisiana since 1996. He is licensed under Certificate No. 11810R.

At some point, Raina was accused of "" with two female patients, according to board documents.

That's almost everything the board is willing to reveal about Raina to his current and future patients. The alleged victims' ages remain a mystery. Raina's conduct remains a mystery. Everything about what transpired between Raina and his alleged victims is a mystery, because the Louisiana board refuses to provide those details online.

So what did the medical board do when it heard about these allegations?

It asked Raina "to voluntarily submit to an evaluation at a facility experienced in boundary violations." Raina complied in April 2009.

Whatever this evaluation turned up is one more secret kept from the public. All that can be said is that the results were serious enough to prompt the board to file formal charges against Raina.

For , the board did drop one trinket into its otherwise obtuse disciplinary documents. It wrote that Raina had violated the "Louisiana Medical Practice Act (the "Act"), pursuant to La. Rev. Stat. §37:1285A (13)."

Antidote tried to untangle this alphanumeric string for far too long before finding a searchable database on . By plugging 37 into "Title, Article, or Rule Number" and 1285 into "Section Number" it was revealed that Raina has been charged with "."

The fog persists.

Rather than face a drawn out administrative proceeding, Raina agreed to enter into a consent order with the board in June 2010. Raina was allowed to continue to practice medicine "on probation" for the next two years. He was fined $1,000. He was ordered to undergo treatment for some unnamed condition. He was ordered to be monitored by the "Physicians' Health Foundation of Louisiana's Physicians' Health Program" for some unnamed reason. And here's the kicker in the :

"Necessity for Chaperone for Female Patients. Dr. Raina shall designate one or more chaperones, preapproved by the Board in writing, in whose physical presence and under whose direct observation he shall conduct the entirety of any and all visits and examinations of female patients under sixty (60) years of age in an office or clinic setting, excluding hospital or nursing home rounds."

We have seen before what can happen with a doctor who is allowed to pick his own chaperone. was accused of homicide in an abortion-related death after he was allowed to handpick as his practice monitor Dr. Charles C. Dotson Jr., a doctor who had been disciplined by the Medical Board of California for repeated acts of negligence.

The real head-scratcher here, though, is this arbitrary age limit. If you are 60 or over, you're not considered at risk. And if you are in a hospital, no matter what your age, you are entirely on your own.

Why would a medical board provide only the vaguest documents online and leave the details locked in a file somewhere, forcing people to submit a written request to see them? Antidote sent the following note to the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners. "I am writing to request an electronic copy of all board documents related to Dr. Sanjay Raina. This should include, but should not be limited to, any administrative complaints filed against him and any board actions taken against him." I will report back how the request is handled in the weeks to come.

Note of Gratitude: To everyone to has helped make Doctors Behaving Badly a mini-sensation this past month, thank you. This includes: Scott Hensley at , Andrew Van Dam at , SielJu at , and Tom Hughes at , Jack Friday at , at Embargo Watch, Gary Schwitzer at Health News Review, of fame, at Flashfree, and the whole crew at the morning show. The hit 100,000 page views this past weekend, many times more than I had anticipated when I created it.

Related Posts:

Doctor appointed as medical board supervisor had been disciplined in New York, California

Comments

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Mr. Heisel, I have accumulated thousands and thousands of reports of doctors involved in sexual misconduct.  Email me if you are interested in seeing the material.

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Mr Heisel, Have you considered writing an article about how patietns can prevent sexual misconduct by doctors? There are some great tips for female patients at . I am sure you have heard of Dr. Earl Bradley, a pediatrician who has been accused of sexually abusing many children. Because of what happened with Dr. Earl Bradley, I think that parents need to be educated on how they can prevent their children from being abused by doctors. There are some excellent tips at .

Picture of William Heisel

Charles,

I have written a lot about doctors who are involved in sexual misconduct cases. If you want to discuss your research further, please email me at editor@reportingonhealth.org.

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