Anti-Vax Pediatrician is back in business, kind of

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Portland pediatrician Paul Thomas, whose license was suspended in December 2020, agreed to return to work under severe restrictions while the Oregon Medical Board continues its investigation.

According to the “interim order” issued in June, Thomas’ practice is limited to patients in acute need of care and is not allowed to discuss vaccination protocols or research into patient care with patients or families. The fact that Thomas agreed to these terms “is not an admission of misconduct,” says the document.

Thomas has been accused of improperly vaccinating his patients and providing false information about the benefits of his recommended vaccination schedule. The original order to immediately suspend the board against the self-proclaimed “vaccine-friendly” doctor identified at least eight different cases of alleged patient harm and gross negligence – all due to lack of vaccinations.

In one 2019 case, an unvaccinated 6-year-old Thomas developed acute tetanus after sustaining a deep wound on his scalp. He spent nearly two months in the intensive care unit at the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital at Oregon Health & Science University. During his stay, the patient required intubation, tracheotomy and feeding tube according to the arrangement of the suspension.

Reporting by The Oregonian found this to be the first reported case of tetanus in Oregon in approximately 30 years at the time. Thomas’ notes from a follow-up appointment with this patient included “a referral to a homeopath, recommendation of fish oil supplements, and [phosphatidylserine]”In these notes there was allegedly no documentation that Thomas” provided an informed consent discussion about the risk / benefit of vaccination for a child who had just suffered a life-threatening illness, “the board wrote.

In an April 2021 complaint and notification document received by MedPage Today, Thomas is accused of putting patients in the “Dr. Paul Approved Vaccine Plan “, which deviates significantly from the recommendations of the CDC. According to the complaint, Thomas claimed that this irregular vaccination schedule “would prevent or reduce the occurrence of autism and other developmental disorders”.

Another case in the complaint described by the board alleges that Thomas asked a mother of a newborn patient who wanted her child to have the polio and rotavirus vaccines if she wanted the vaccines because she was traveling to Africa planned. During the same visit he “repeatedly linked verbal vaccines to autism” and asked the patient’s mother how bad she would feel if her child developed autism when she “could have prevented it”.

The complaint also cites a case where a pair of twins were infected with vaccine-preventable rotavirus gastroenteritis at 10 months of age, despite their mother saying she believed her children had received the rotavirus vaccine. Thomas’s clinic card, however, “contains documentation of parental refusal of vaccines”. The complaint goes on to describe numerous other cases where parents, who asked Thomas about the standard CDC recommended vaccines, were told that his clinic did not have them in stock.

It remains unclear how the restrictions contained in the “interim order” will be enforced; At the time of going to press, Thomas did not respond to the request for comment and the board declined to comment on the case. But while Thomas may be prevented from talking to patients about his vaccination schedule, which delays some vaccinations and excludes others altogether, he continues to advertise on his YouTube channel, which currently has 1.45 million subscribers. Additionally, his 2016 book on his “Vaccine-Friendly Plan” is listed as the “# 1 Best Seller” in pediatric emergencies on Amazon with thousands of 5-star ratings.

In his July 6 video, Thomas said that despite his license being refunded, he still hasn’t returned to his practice because he has lost his professional liability insurance and other insurance contracts. He mentions a future 8-day hearing due in January 2022 that will determine the fate of his license to practice medicine. (This could not be independently verified by MedPage Today).

Last updated July 14, 2021

  • Kara Grant joined MedPage Today’s Enterprise & Investigative Reporting team in February 2021. It covers psychiatry, mental health, and medical education. consequences

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