Did OHSU do the right thing?


The sordid tale of the flashy young anesthesia doctor who was bounced from Oregon Health & Science University amidst charges of sexual harassment will provide lots of headlines in weeks ahead. I don't plan to cover them all here. But today's news is interesting. The University of Florida med school, where Jason Campbell landed after leaving Portland, has put him on leave. Apparently the Gator MD types didn't know about his problems here when they hired him.

The key question for Oregonians is whether the OHSU suits said anything to anyone about Campbell's issues as they let him go. The suggestion in the news today is that the Oregon med school agreed to keep his offenses on the down-low as part of getting him out the door.

But if that is true, was what they did legal?

The lawsuit contends OHSU failed to adhere to mandatory reporting laws in alerting the state medical board of the woman’s harassment allegations against Campbell.

Those laws require physicians to self-report and health care facilities to report to the Oregon Medical Board any official action taken against a doctor. Official action is defined as any “restriction, limitation, loss or denial of privileges of a license to practice medicine, or any formal action taken against a licensee by a government agency or a health care facility based on a finding of medical incompetence, unprofessional conduct, physical incapacity or impairment.”

A health care facility also must promptly report a doctor’s “voluntary withdrawal, resignation or limitation of staff privileges at a health care facility” if the physician’s “voluntary action occurs while” the person is under investigation for any reason related to “possible medical incompetence, unprofessional conduct or physical incapacity or impairment,” according to state law.

Things that make you go, "Hmmm..."

OHSU spokeswoman Tamara Hargens-Bradley said Monday night that the university did not report anything to the state about Campbell, saying “no report was required under the Medical Practices Act.”

The Oregonian has Maxine Bernstein on the story, and she is one of their very best. Stock up on the popcorn; this could get even more interesting.

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