Failed Nurse Practioner Steps In to Cover for Doctor with Disastrous Results
Occasionally, when you go to a doctor’s appointment, you expect to be seen by another practitioner in the office. Perhaps your doctor is unavailable, or has to attend to an emergency. Those types of cases are perfectly acceptable in healthcare. However, one doctor has taken full advantage of the willingness of another medical professional to act in his stead, and he will pay for what he’s done.
According to a recent RevCycle Intelligence article, a St. Louis doctor a registered nurse to act on his behalf for more than two years. During that time, she saw patients, ordered diagnostic tests and even wrote prescriptions under the doctor’s name. Insurances were also billed, progress notes were prepared, and other duties were carried out when the doctor wasn’t in the office.
The article states that the nurse had actually failed her Nurse Practitioner exam several times, so she was operating in a capacity that was well beyond her qualifications. The doctor frequently went out of town, and he was only physically in the office two or three times per week. Five days a week, the nurse would take over his patients.
It’s hard to say the damage that was caused by this doctor’s willingness to break the law. However, cases like these might be more common that we realize. If you’re suspicious about something that’s occurring with your doctor, contact a St. Louis malpractice attorney right away.