If you have received notice of a complaint against your license or have received a notice that your healthcare licensing board is investigating you, you need to join with people experienced in these matters right away. Delay could hurt your situation. HARBR is about action and change, but our first concern is seeing to it that licensees are safe against board abuses. WE are not lawyers, therapists, salespeople, or the government. If you are already in a disciplinary process, you also need to call us right away. We can help you make a difference.
A VERY URGENT MESSAGE FOR LICENSEES
HARBR stands for “Healthcare Alliance for Regulatory Board Reform.”
Our primary purpose is the fair treatment of healthcare professionals in disciplinary processes.
We are are not interested in guilt or innocence. We are interested in fighting to assure that healthcare professionals are afforded their civil & human rights, the same as all citizens.
Why healthcare regulatory boards?
Healthcare regulatory boards, through their licensing functions, determine whether a healthcare professional may or may not practice. When problems or concerns arise about a licensee’s conduct or performance – investigations, disciplinary processes and penalization may follow. HARBR supports this. However, HARBR supports this conditionally. HARBR believes that these processes must be fair.
At present, healthcare regulatory boards tend to be dangerously unfair.
In fact, there is a fundamental unfairness in most of the functions of most of the healthcare regulatory boards in most of the states across the nation. The cost of this unfairness is high. It negatively affects patients, providers, and healthcare generally.
Although the healthcare regulatory boards may be assumed to put some “bad” practitioners out of business, they have also put many good practitioners out of business. When this happens, the effects can be devastating. Even without a licenses revocation, a healthcare provider with a “black mark” (right or wrong, large or small) is effectively blacklisted via national data banks and will likely never have a full or optimal practice ever again in their lives. Well trained, devoted practitioners, even in the processes leading up to penalties, are often driven into poverty and despair. Feeling helpless and hopeless, with nowhere to turn, many healthcare professionals turn to suicide.
HARBR believes this is unacceptable.
We are here to reform. We are here to help. Please continue to read, and be in contact with us.
A Brief Overview
Severe Weather Warning & Safe HARBR
If you have received a letter of complaint, are being investigated, or are going through a disciplinary process, you should should seek shelter now. Do not wait. Without SPECIAL intervention, things will not be okay. Thinks will not work themselves out. Innocence will not help you. The board will NOT be reasonable. They will be ruthless & tricky. Without EXTRA intervention, justice will not prevail. There is a thing called “Administrative Law. ” You are NOT prepared for it.
First Response & Outreach
When a licensee receives a letter of complaint or notice of an investigation or disciplinary action, it is essential they get sound advice immediately. Because licensees may have never heard of HARBR, HARBR attempts to reach out to licensees who have been newly implicated as soon as possible. We invite every healthcare professional to spread the word about HARBR so we can be known to professionals BEFORE they need us and so colleagues may help out colleagues in time of need.
Real-life Defense Primer: Do’s & Don’ts
HARBR can give you a set of “first-things-first,” “must-know,” lessons designed to assure you are best prepared to demand full justice when there are allegations against you.
Our Services Are Free All the Way
HARBR is mission-driven. We do not charge for our services. There are ways to help us grow financially, but if you are in trouble, don’t wait. We will not charge you.
Innocent? Guilty? We Don’t Care
HARBR’s mission is not to judge licensees who have allegations against them, but to see to it that licensees receive TRUE due process & are treated fairly in disciplinary procedures.
We are NOT the Government
HARBR has absolutely no affiliation with the government. We are presently taking a stand against injustices in board disciplinary procedures.
You are not alone and should not be alone. We have a large and growing network of physicians, psychologists, counselors, therapists, nurses, naturopaths, alternative providers, unlicensed providers, and other healthcare professionals who, one way of another, have had experiences with immensely difficult regulatory boards. Additionally, we network with other organizations who support us both in and out of state.
The members of HARBR have joined their massive libraries. We have a lot of resources and we have organized them. Before we organized, most of us did our own research and in hindsight, found that our information, materials and knowledge bases had categorizable utility. When you join with us, you’ll not need to start from scratch. We know statutes, administrative rules, codes of ethics for attorneys, case law, the Constitution, the Attorney General’s Model Rules, textbook lawyer’s tricks, how bills become law, and so on. You can be directed to websites, and sent material by email. HARBR’s resource acquisition is ongoing.
Our members have more experience in dealing with healthcare regulatory board disciplinary processes than any other source. Attorneys often bring a helpful, or even essential, skill set to proceedings, but without us, we have found that attorneys can only take us half way there and this is not enough. As you continue to read this site or speak with our members, you will find out why winning in these matters is an all or nothing proposition. We hope that in the future, entire careers won’t be on the line for even small or honest infractions. We have learned from pressure. In a disciplinary processes, the licensee is the only person with anything to lose. The state prosecutor has nothing to lose. Your attorney has nothing to lose, The judges, the board members, the board staff, witnesses … no one has anything to lose but the licensees. We’ve done our homework because we’ve had to. Please note our disclaimer in the footer.
Dealing with a board complaint or disciplinary process can be emotionally devastating. We can refer you to HARBR trusted therapists who are both familiar with these matters and able to provide the extra privacy-assurances needed by licensees at these times. Broadly, many licensees who are subjected to board allegations experience a PTSD-like syndrome in any or all its manifestations. Increasingly recognized is something called Medical Malpractice Stress Syndrome (MMSS). Once associated with physicians and malpractice, the syndrome is now known to affect professionals in any healthcare field. Too, coming to light is the likelihood that facing a board disciplinary process is even more devastating that a malpractice suit in and of itself. Although some HARBR members are therapists, and members are free to make arrangements as they please, beyond referrals, our primary ambition is to provide effective “peer” support. See our disclaimer in the footer.
Referral to Attorneys & Attorney Education
We know what to look for in attorneys and continue to expand our list of the better attorneys (both in and out of state) as part of our resource acquisition. Sadly, this has this list has been informed as much by bad experiences among our members as good ones. There are numerous ways in which attorneys can be less than effective. We want to help you find attorneys who are honest, smart, determined to win for you, and educated in the dynamics of board disciplinary processes. Many attorneys believe they know the real-time details of Administrative Law, but they don’t. This is why HARBR is willing to help you hone your attorney’s skills. It is best to face a disciplinary process with a good lawyer. Too many of our members in the past have had to choose between throwing good money away on a bad attorney and going pro se (self representation). We don’t want this to happen to you.
Judge Education & Amicus Briefs
HARBR has come to believe that many (or most) judges who hear cases in the Court of Appeals, are not fully aware of the dynamics of healthcare regulatory board disciplinary processes. As wise, experienced, and just as judges may be, we do not believe they are fully aware of what is at stake for the licensees or what licensees have faced before getting to the appellate stage. HARBR is working on an outreach campaign to judges so that good judges may deliver better opinions and verdicts. Much of this will be done by publishing articles on this site which are specifically aimed at educating judges about the disciplinary experience. We are also developing our ability to write timely “amicus briefs.” These are briefs sent to the court at the outset of appellate hearings. They are designed to provide helpful information by people who may have an interest in the case but are not directly involved in the case. When HARBR writes an “amicus” brief, HARBR would be writing as an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”).
Strategy & Responsivity
Although HARBR has organized to make things easier, disciplinary procedures can be quite complex. HARBR members help each other strategize when something new has arisen, when there is a change in the trajectory of a disciplinary matter, or when a licensee wishes to re-explore their options. Our members are educated, experienced, intelligent, and realistic. We do well when we work in concert.
Archives: Library Collective
Our archives are growing every day. We have a private library which consists of our collected written material (full text), reference lists, link sets, a history of our organization, cases, case histories, case precedents, legislative work, preserved communications, and other resources. Some of our material is specifically designed for the public, some is designed for special use, and some is considered “classified.” Not all material is available to the public. We protect sensitive information.
Your Financial Survival
If you are going through a board disciplinary process, the financial impact can be monumental. It can take a toll on you in the the short run, the mid-run, and/or the long run depending on how you play it. HARBR can help you make a plan to anticipate and minimize your cost.
Standing Against Conflicts of Interest
Although this is part of HARBR members’ role as activists, conflicts of interests confound the fairness of disciplinary processes at every turn. It needs to be addressed as it arises.
Some of the terms you will need to know are: administrative law, separation of powers, ex parte communication, trade restriction motivation, and regulatory capture.
Standing Against Bogus “Corrective Programs,” Corrective Deals, & PHPs
It started with medical boards, but increasingly other healthcare regulatory boards are adding mandatory assessments and treatment to their means of assaulting licensees. Often presented as an “alternative to discipline,” damage to the licensee is rarely if ever averted by the licensees’ “compliance.”
HARBR can help you find the witnesses you need to win your case. From within and without HARBR, we can help you get expert witnesses, fact witnesses, and character witnesses. Contrary to what might first come to mind, many of these witnesses can testify to the nature of the board, the nature of the board’s attorney and investigators, the behavior of the board staff, the nature of “corrective” programs, and so forth. You will need witnesses and they will need to present powerfully. Witness procurement, as with all things in HARBR is done lawfully. To do otherwise would undermine a case.
Group Talk via Listserv
We have an online communication group (listserv) which is for members only. You can be in contact with your colleagues 24/7. Communicate with the whole group or only those you choose.
Privacy & Vetting
Although HARBR encourages boldness, some members should choose to be “ghost” members for at time. We vet all members, but do so reasonably. We are protective of members.
Responding to board assaults is not enough. HARBR finds that healthcare regulatory boards across the nation are fundamentally flawed. Some believe they are so flawed and mired in corruption that they cannot be repaired. It is HARBR’s mission to reform regulatory to the point that they serve their proper purpose and only their proper purpose. We have found no evidence to show that they actually protect the public. We have found no evidence to show that they hold healthcare professions to their highest standards. HARBR works with state legislators, like minded organizations, and the press via letters, email, phone, & face to face meetings. We help craft legislation, testify before legislative committees, and we monitor & investigate wrong-doings within regulatory boards. We affect administrative rulemaking and report illegal and unethical behaviors of board attorneys to state bar associations for investigation and discipline. We also present our concerns directly to the public via many venues.
Broadcasting of Your Side of the Story
Never without your express consent, we can broadcast your side of the story. Although it is different with different boards, most make their claims against you available to the public. It may be on their website. It may be in the press. The boards’ incriminating (and often libelous) side of the story is often searchable on the internet (googleable). If boards choose, they can even optimize their story on search engines (SEO). The boards are not interested in playing fair. They do not broadcast your side of the story anywhere. This, you must do yourself. If you do not, the boards will make a monster of you before everyone that matters. Secondary websites such as “Quack Watch,” and “Psych Crime” may reprint and circulate the boards’ side of the story. Friends, family, and colleagues may come to believe the boards’ allegations. Employers, future employers, professional organizations can also be influenced. We can publish and SEO your side of the story on this website, help you set up your own website, and discuss strategies by which you may meet with the press.
In short, HARBR membership is free for those going through disciplinary processes who are also willing to contribute to the larger cause (after their crises have been stabilized). See more in the membership section.
Orientation to the Current State of Healthcare Regulation: Essential Reading
Written with a focus on physicians, this is an excellent orientation to the strange world of healthcare regulation for most healthcare professionals. Every healthcare professional needs to know this material.
Functioning as a Physician in a Regulatory Environment [Controlled by Medical Boards and the Medical Industrial Complex] by Eric Dover, 2016
This is chapter 10 from an excellent book entitled: Risk Management, Liability Insurance, and Asset Protection Strategies for Doctors and Advisors: Best Practices from Leading Consultants and Certified Medical Planners™. Editors: David Edward Marcinko and Hope Rachel Hetico. It is directly relevant to the material covered on this site.
News Stories and HARBR-Relevant Articles from the United States and Around the World
Got news relevant to HARBR? There are plenty of relevant news stories out there. Our news posts have been infrequent, but this is due solely to the limits of our current journalistic resources. Got a story or a link? Contact us!
Physician’s Bill of Rights Slips into Coma in Baton Rouge, LA
May 4, 2018Louisiana Senate Bill 286, dubbed the Physician’s Bill of Rights, fell into a “coma” before the Louisiana Legislature on (Wednesday) May 2, 2018. “Coma” is my word. The official status of this bill is...
MD’s Appeal in PHP, Medical Board Lawsuit Denied
April 19, 2018MD’s Appeal in PHP, Medical Board Lawsuit Denied An appeal by a physician whose lawsuit against the North Carolina PHP and the state medical board was thrown out by a lower court has been denied...
One-Man Fight: MD Takes On State Medical Board, PHP
April 18, 2018One-Man Fight: MD Takes On State Medical Board, PHP A physician whose lawsuit against the North Carolina Physician Health Program and the state’s medical board was dismissed is appealing his cas...
News and Updates Related to HARBR Members, Friends, & Affiliates
Members, Friends, & Affiliates: Got News or Updates Related to to Your Own Situation? Want it Told Here? Send it in! We’ll post it!
Friends Outside of Oregon: Dr. Michael Langan & PHP’s
August 25, 2017August 24, 2017 – Injustice in the healthcare regulation is occurring across the nation and across the world. Although HARBR-proper is largely centered in Oregon, USA at present, we have friends...
HARBR’s Christian Wolff Wins His Attorney Fees
April 25, 2017August 15, 2017 – On August 9, 2017, Christian Wolff won his attorney fees and costs by declaration of the Oregon Court of Appeals (OCA). Wolff Wins Attorney Fees Against Psychology Board He wo...
The Seminal Bice Case and the Start of HARBR
April 26, 2017August 15, 2017 – On October 19, 2016, a member of a group soon to become HARBR, discovered the Opinion of the Oregon Court of Appeals (OCA) in relation to David T. Bice v. the [Oregon] Board of...
Links to HARBR Recommended Websites
A Blog by Michael Langan, MD
Dr. Langan’s website addresses issues related to medical boards, Physician Health Programs, problems in the legal and judicial systems, and healthcare provider suicide. Highly recommended by HARBR, it is relevant to all healthcare professionals.
Dr. Langan’s blog is subtitled: The Physician Wellness Movement and Illegitimate Authority: The Need for Revolt and Reconstruction
America’s leading voice for ideal medical care
Dr. Wible’s website focuses on the abuse of medical students, physician suicide, and returning sanity to the practice of medicine by developing better practice models. She has given TED talks, and is finishing up a film on the abuse of medical students called “First Do No Harm.”
Dr. Wible’s website is HARBR-recommended reading for all healthcare professionals and for the people who care about them.
A Blog by Louise Andrew, MD, JD, FACEP
Dr. Andrew’s website focuses on the stress of “litigation” against healthcare professionals which includes stresses associated with board actions. Similar to PTSD, a condition known as Medical Malpractice Stress Syndrome (MMSS) is being increasingly recognized by mental health professionals.
Formerly a Physician Health Program physician, Dr. Andrew has become an outspoken critic of PHPs.
A blog by Robert Plamondon
Among other things, Mr. Plamondon is a professional hypnotherapist, an unlicensed practitioner, and an activist in matters related to both licensed and unlicensed practice. In recent years, while going to bat for an unlicensed counselor who was practicing legally, Mr. Plamondon became interested in the mystery which is the Oregon Board of Psychologist Examiners (OBPE). He has written regularly about OBPE in a special section of his blog.
Informing America of the Injustice Against Medical Professionals and Chronic Pain Patients
Although HARBR as an organization takes no position on the prescription of opioids, we do support all healthcare providers, patients, and clients in their pursuit of justice. Doctors of Courage (DoC) is, at it’s core a group of Pain Management Specialists, and the patients who rely on them for care. DoC is active in the courts, state legislatures, and on a national level. As the nation addresses that which has been called the Opioid Crisis, DoC is petitioning to make sure this is not done in a way which unjustly targets doctors or leaves their patients with out care. DoC seems to embrace a Christian tradition. HARBR, as an organization, holds no position on spirituality or religious affiliation.
A blog by Eric Dover, MD CTTH
Dr. Dover’s website tells his story of board assault, provides documentation, & features the stories and documentation of others. It is Dr. Dover’s website, prior to the establishment of HARBR, which served to alert many a licensee that they were not alone in the stormy sea of licensing board attacks. Steadfast in the fight, Dr. Dover serves on HARBR’s Executive Crew. This site contains useful resources and “big picture” insights into the history of the problem which regulatory boards have become.
On healthcare provider suicide, depression, and profound litigation (& board action) trauma
It is a sad, but little known fact, that on average, the U.S. loses the equivalent of an entire medical school each year (est 250-400 physicians) to suicide. That’s about one physician lost every day to a diagnosable and treatable illness. Physicians are from 1.4 to 2.7 times more likely to complete suicide than are other members of our society. And this assumes that reporting of a physician’s cause of death, usually performed by a fellow physician, is accurate. Continue at The Painful Truth on the Black Bile website.
“The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny.” – James Madison, The Federalist (Papers), No. 47
Separation of Powers
“No person shall … be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law …” (5th Amendment) , “[n]or shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law … ” (14th Amendement) – U.S. Constitution.
The Due Process Clause
“No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws” (14th Amendment) – U.S. Constitution.
The Equal Protection Clause
“This Constitution … shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding” (Article VI, Section 2). – The U.S. Constitution
The Supremacy Clause
“I would rather die on my feet than live on my knees.”
“I see no evidence to suggest that any healthcare regulatory board actually protects the public”
“Unless we put medical freedom into the Constitution, the time will come when medicine will organize into an undercover dictatorship. To restrict the art of healing to one class of men and deny equal privileges to others will constitute the Bastille of medical science. All such laws are un-American and despotic and have no place in a republic…The Constitution of this republic should make special privilege for medical freedom as well as religious freedom.” – Benjamin Rush, Personal Physician to George Washington
The Rest of the Story: Legal
These “stories” are not our personal stories. They are mostly legal or official documents which support accounts of events which the healthcare regulatory boards have failed to publish. Originally entitled “The Other Side of the Story,” we renamed this section “The Rest of the Story” because HARBR members were concerned that the former title would suggest that our stories were simply honest disagreements about events as they occurred. We believe that it is much more than that. The healthcare regulatory boards tend to publish absolutely awful things about us. They do this on websites, in press releases, an in other places for all to see. They lie, spin, twist, and defame. They make monsters of us. No board that we are aware of publishes the beleaguered healthcare professionals’ side of the story. Nor do the boards tend to write in objective styles. In language that is actually written into laws and rules, the boards write that we are “immoral,” “dishonorable,” ” and represent “grave dangers to the public.”
Often these accounts are written in a form which makes them appear very authoritative. Often they are on official State letterhead with a State seal, and with numbers running down the left margin.
Frequently, groups who track bad healthcare professionals will rewrite the boards’ accounts or board-informed news articles in narrative form. Quack Watch and PsychCrime are but a couple of the extra places we get defamed.
This is where we tell OUR “side” of the LEGAL story. This is where we Search Engine Optimize (SEO) OUR side of the legal matter. This is where, we rebut the boards’ BS with documentation, telling the right side of the story, the relevant side of the story, the rest of the story. Borrowing from Al Franken’s book title, this is where we expose and impugn the “Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them.” The world will be amazed when they find out what is really going on. You can read OUR accounts here. Soon, we hope you will be able to to find OUR documents right next to the boards’ documents in any google search.
Our Stories & Personal Experiences
Our experiences with our healthcare regulatory boards are all different. They are also all the same. They are horror stories. They are formulaic. None of us have been physically walked into torture chambers, but we have been lead to torturous situations and places by the circumstances the regulatory boards have created. Most of us are no longer practicing in our fields due to a systematic blacklisting which occurs in the United States. Mid-career, we have had to decide what we’ll do after leaving careers we’ve loved. We’ve gone broke, we’ve been defamed, we’ve lost homes and families. We’ve been subjected to outrageous mockeries of justice, and we have looked to the boards of the healing arts for some compassion and humanity only to find none. Our anger has been muted because we’ve had no place to put it. We’ve seen our colleagues fall into despair, helplessness, fear and shame. We’ve seen them battle with obsessive thoughts of suicide and we’ve seen some of them loose that battle. We grieve them and celebrate them.
Our stories are hard to believe. We have had a hard time believing them ourselves. They are laced with absurdities and preposterousness. When you read the ways in which real healthcare professions have been destroyed by lawless arms of government (the boards), you will find yourself compelled to do some fact checking. We hope that you will find leads to independent sources here on our site.
What you are about to read are the stories of the Fighters. That’s what HARBR is – the Fighters. Those who have cooperated have have fared as poorly, but in different ways. Whether you have been suffering these experiences in silence or are are otherwise moved by our stories, we hope you will join us in our fight.
HARBR presently has two types of membership and both are free. The first and most important is for those currently being accused, investigated, tried, or disciplined by a healthcare regulatory board. The second is for those committed activists who would like to give their time and energy toward healthcare regulatory board reform. These membership types will always be free.
Because we are still weighing matters related to organizational type for tax purposes, we are not presently accepting payment for memberships nor are we accepting donations. Although we are looking at 501(c) nonprofit status, we are working toward maximum legal provision of member and contributor anonymity (in accordance with member and contributor wishes). We may abandon the “membership model” altogether.
Whether we call Our People “members,” “associates,” “clients” or “volunteers,” know this much: We want to help those who are being denied justice in healthcare regulation, and we would love to have help in achieving necessary & essential healthcare regulatory board reform.
Contact us right now.
Use this map to find your own State Capital or to find other HARBR relevant locations.
Two of the biggest obstacles to public participation in government are lack of transparency and stonewalling. On October 15, 2017, HARBR has begun posting OPEN Letters to agencies and institutions who are – have been, or may be – secretive, privately unprofessional, or non-responsive. You may be amazed at what you read.
Credits & Disclaimers
- Thanks to all members of HARBR for your courage, your participation and your never ending commitment to justice.
- Thank you to Dr. Chris Hatlestad for making this website possible.
- Thanks to Pixabay and Pexels photographers who have contributed their work to Creative Commons.
* Legal Disclaimers
- Important: Unless specifically noted, no HARBR members are attorneys nor is HARBR in any way a law firm. Unless otherwise specified no HARBR members are formally trained in law. For legal guidance and opinion, one should seek counsel from a person licensed to practice law. HARBR offers only layperson’s views. HARBR’s views and opinions, and/or the views and opinions of HARBR’s members should not be relied on in legal matters. Nothing on this website should be relied up on as legal advice.