Skinned alive

So we are often discussing medical negligence and such, but this story about a dermatologist in Spokane, Washington, who was recently awarded a $600,000 settlement from Washington state health officials is interesting. What is most interesting is what the settlement was for.

In made-for-television fashion, it is a sordid story about a vindictive ex-wife. Basically, dermatologist Dr. William “Phil” Werschler was in a nasty divorce with his ex-wife Kara. Kara called the U.S. Inspector General anonymously and told them Werschler was a sex-crazed maniac who snorted cocaine and indulged in sexual orgies with his staff and patients. She also said he solicited prostitutes and falsified medical records. The state’s Department of Health then began investigating the allegations, which turned out to be false, but was, according to Werschler’s attorneys, overzealous in their investigation. The investigators contacted patients and made the erroneous charges public.

Werschler contends his livelihood and his well-being were destroyed by the investigation and that he will never fully regain his reputation. The investigator who went after Werschler, Dwight Correll, still works with the health department.

For more on this story, see this article.