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Questionable hires call VA screening process into question

People likely take comfort in the assumption that the hospitals and medical centers in Queens take a great deal of care in screening the providers that are hired to take care of them. Doctors go through years of specialized education and training, yet even still need to go through further credentialing in order to be allowed to admit and practice at medical facilities. This added care no doubt comes from the commitment facilities make to provide the best possible care of their respective patient populations. Perhaps this is why when stories surface of physicians with troubling pasts are allowed to practice, people are so troubled. 

Several such stories have recently surfaced which has called the hiring and screening processed employed by the Department of Veteran's Affairs into question. Several doctors cited in claims stemming from care at VA hospitals were revealed to have pasts that legal experts agree should have called their candidacy to practice into question. One neurosurgeon was hired despite having had 12 malpractice claims filed against him and having his medical license revoked in another state. Two psychologists were hired by different facilities despite one having been disciplined for sexual misconduct and the other having several felony convictions on his record. In another yet another case, a psychiatrist known as "The Candy Man" was brought on despite having a history of prescribing large amounts of narcotics and even taking medications home with him. 

Doctors should not be stigmatized for a single mistake, yet a repeated pattern or errors should case concern. Thus, hospitals and healthcare organizations that do not appear to place an emphasis on screening doctors could be accused of putting patients at risk. Those looking to further such accusations may be wise to seek the assistance of an attorney. 

Source: USA Today "USA TODAY Investigation: VA knowingly hires doctors with past malpractice claims, discipline for poor care" Slack, Donovan, Dec. 03, 2017

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