Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Fall of the Geiers Continues Apace

A brief break in the posters to bring you some updates on the Geier front. As you have no doubt read by now, David Geier, son of Dr. Mark Geier, has been found by the Maryland Board of Physicians (PDF) to have practiced medicine without a license. His penalty? A $10,000 fine. As Dr. Steven Novella wrote at Neurologica Blog, this is not a huge sum of money, as far as penalties go. The order mentions that the Board took into account:

the extent to which David Geier derived financial benefit from the improper conduct, the willfulness of the improper conduct, and the extent of potential harm caused by his misrepresentations.
The Health Occupations code, Title 14, Section 606(4) places a cap of $50,000 on the civil fine that can be levied. I saw this coming in May last year after reading the charging document against Dr. Geier, but I don't think that this is the end of the matter. You see, 14-606(4) states that those violating the laws against practicing medicine without a license are not only punishable by a civil fine, but are also:
Guilty of a felony and on conviction is subject to a fine not exceeding $ 10,000 or imprisonment not exceeding 5 years or both
The law is not worded as being either criminal or civil penalties, but rather both. I suspect that we will see Mr. Geier face an additional fine and/or jail time, plus he will have a felony conviction on his record, before all is said and done.

That's not the only news, though. There have been a couple more developments regarding David's father, Dr. Mark Geier. If you've been reading me for at least a year, you know that I've been keeping tabs on where Dr. Geier has licenses to practice medicine, and in which of those states his license has been suspended. One state that actually renewed his license was Hawaii. Although his license is currently in good standing there, it may not be for too much longer. A petition has been filed against Dr. Geier for failing to disclose disciplinary actions taken in other states. Unless he schmoozes his way through the Hawaii board, it appears yet another of his licenses is on the chopping block.

And then there's Ohio. He had applied for a license to practice there in 2009. With all the brouhaha around his suspension in Maryland and, subsequently, numerous other states, they put his application on hold. After attempting, and failing, to contact him numerous times to schedule a hearing for him to state his case, they denied his application (PDF) on August 8, 2012. He has until the 23rd to appeal this denial. It looks like the people of Ohio will be safe from his predations, though one wonders about any possible colleagues that may try to improperly treat children in his stead.

One interesting tidbit I came across in the denial order was his application for a license itself. In it, Dr. Geier reports that in 1985, he had to pay $90,000 in which he and Genetic Consultants Inc. defended against charges of medical malpractice, wrongful death, infliction of emotional distress and misrepresentation of facts. Unfortunately, I was unable to find the court documents online, but if anyone is in the Montgomery County Circuit Court area and feels like looking it up, the case number is listed as 16961. The court web site lists several other malpractice cases in which he has been involved, but the documents and outcomes are not available online.

I will get the map updated with the Ohio decision and will continue to keep tabs on his remaining licenses. For more on the backstory, see the links below.
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