Last August Physician Health Programs- More Harm Than Good? was published on Medscape and broke new ground as it was the first mainstream medical article critical of state physician health programs (PHPs). Pauline Anderson raised specific and serious questions that deserved specific and serious answers. That did not happen. The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and Federation of State Physician Health Programs (FSPHP) both responded to Anderson’s article but completely deflected the substantive issues. The specific and serious questions raised were simply met with silence and patently ignored.
Jeanne Lenzer’s “Physician health programs under fire” published today in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) shines further light on state physician health programs and discusses the lack of transparency, oversight and accountability and profit motive of these programs. Direct and serious questions that deserve direct and serious answers. Let’s hold both the ASAM and FSPHP accountable for directly answering them this time without the benefit of their usual obfuscation and deflection. No more logical fallacies or appeals to authority. The authorities are both illegitimate and irrational and to see that all one has to do is look under the rock and sunshine is the best disinfectant.