Fake Sick Note Scam Day of Reckoning?

MacIver News Service | November 14, 2011

[Madison, Wisc…] We’ll soon know if  Wisconsin doctors who were caught issuing fake sick notes to seemingly healthy protesters in a MacIver News video report earlier this year will face any discipline from the state.

Several medical professionals involved in the incident will be facing the Wisconsin Medical Examining Board on Wednesday, which is expected to make its final decisions about the incident, according to the Department of Safety and Professional Services.

As tens of thousands of public employees skipped work earlier this year to attend protest rallies outside the Wisconsin State Capitol, many wondered if they would face any disciplinary action for unexcused absences.

Their solution? On February 19, a group of men and women in lab coats purporting to be doctors were handing out medical excuse notes, without examining the ‘patients.’

“I asked if they were handing out doctors’ excuses and a guy said yes and asked me if I needed one,” one woman told us at the time. “When I told them I needed one for February 16 and 17th, he wondered if I wanted to come back here for the protests next week. I said, ‘sure,’ and I received a doctor’s note for the 16th through the 25th of February, without a medical exam.”

The Department of Safety and Professional Services contact for this week’s disciplinary meeting, Tom Ryan, told the MacIver News Service that attorney Jeanette Lytle is representing the state in the fake sick note case.

Lytle is listed as the attorney in seven of the disciplinary cases to be presented on Wednesday.  Six of the doctors in those cases are affiliated with the University of Wisconsin. They are Louis Sanner, Kathleen Oriel, James Shropshire, Hannah Keevil, Bernard Micke, and Mark Beamsley.

In April, MNS, reported the University of Wisconsin would investigate the incident, but it would not reveal the identities of the doctors involved.  University punishment, which has never been confirmed, could have ranged from written reprimand to loss of pay and leadership positions.

Lytle did not return a call  on Monday to verify whether all these doctors are connected to the incident caught on tape earlier this year. However at least two of the doctors, Doctors Louis Sanner and James Shropshire, were subjects of a MacIver News Service video about the sick notes scam.

The seventh case Lytle is handling, Dr. Adam Balin, is connected to Dean Health Plan.  He was previously identified as handing out a sick note to Josiah Cantrall, a conservative blogger who attended the protests and who appeared on Fox News in February with the note.

The Medical Examing Board will meet at 8am Wednesday at 1400 E. Washington Avenue, in room 121A .