You spent years earning your medical degree and completing your residency training. You passed national exams and endured a rigorous state licensing process. You adhere strictly to the tenets of the Hippocratic Oath, and you may have a long, unblemished record as a physician. Unfortunately, there are still individuals and groups out there who think they know better than you do when it comes to the practice of medicine.
The 2013 case of Dr. Shelley Sella is a lesson in how physicians can sometimes be subject to social and political pressure. It also demonstrates, though, that you can successfully defend your record and preserve your license and your reputation.
Politics Vs. Medicine
Dr. Sella, a New Mexico physician, was investigated for practicing late-term abortions. Though she performed such procedures rarely and only under medical necessity—in cases where the health of the mother or fetus was in question—some organizations raised questions about whether she should be performing them at all.
The case points to the fragility of doctors' relationships with the public. Though you've been specifically trained as a doctor to consider the medical and ethical implications of difficult health situations, patients, politicians, and grass-roots organizations of all types will sometimes call your decisions into question.
Dr. Sella worked in an area of medicine that is often subject to political opposition. The fact is, though, that in today's social and political climate, any medical procedure can be questioned, from prescribing marijuana for PTSD to administering life-saving vaccines. And the opposition can be considerable. It is worth noting, for example, that in Dr. Sella's case, pressure came from well-funded groups outside the state of New Mexico.
Luckily, state medical boards have procedures in place that allow you to defend yourself, and you have some important due process rights. Ultimately, Dr. Sella was able to survive this attack. The New Mexico Medical Board cleared her of any impropriety. Even if you are entirely innocent, though, it can still be difficult to fight these kinds of attacks. You never want to try to do it alone. You want the best professional help you can find.
The attorneys at the Lento Law Firm can work with you to create a strong defense and will support you during all phases of an investigation and hearing, from helping you respond to the initial charges to representing you at formal hearings. We know how to navigate the medical system in your state, and we're well-versed in how politics can influence the process.
The Lento Law Firm Can Protect Your License
The Professional License Defense Team at the Lento Law Firm knows how hard you work and how seriously you take your ethical responsibilities. If you're dealing with a politically motivated attack on your license or any other threat to your reputation, we're here to help. We know the law, and we're experienced in representing clients before state medical boards. To find out what we can do for you, contact the Lento Law Firm Team today at 888.535.3686 or use our automated response form.