In her “news” article, World Staff Writer Samantha Vicent started with the header: “Murder, racketeering indictments come down from ‘pill mill’ operation in Sequoyah County.” With that kind of heading, what chance does a doctor have in court? Public opinion has already been compromised. Just the stigma of being called a “pill mill” is impossible to combat.
Rev Ronald Vincent Myers, Sr., MD has been indicted in association with 3 other providers in action on April 15, 2016 in Oklahoma City, OK. Dr. Myers, from Belzoni, Mississippi, worked at the Wellness Clinic of Roland Inc. in Roland, Oklahoma between August 2009 and February 2014. He is charged with one count of racketeering and two counts of unlawfully distributing controlled substances on accusations he prescribed painkillers and antidepressants to multiple people who had no medical reason for receiving the drugs.
Racketeering charges is a way to confiscate a person’s assets. The only laws that allow assets to be confiscated are racketeering and violation of the CSA (Controlled Substances Act). Doctor’s assets are usually confiscated simply based on the CSA. Adding racketeering is overkill, but makes a good doctor sound bad in the media. Dr. Myers was not an owner or President of the Wellness Clinic, nor did he ever even attend a business meeting. He was simply the Medical Director over problem patients only.
Who is judging the medical reason for receiving drugs? In cases against doctors, US Attorneys are now the ones making the decision if there is a medical reason for receiving drugs. In my opinion, that action is practicing medicine without a license. How can they, without medical training, determine that a doctor’s action is not justified? Maybe we need to start charging US Attorneys with practicing medicine without a license. Oh! I forgot! US Attorneys have actual immunity. They can do whatever the ____ they want without repercussions. Maybe those laws need to be changed. After all, in today’s climate, they probably make more money than doctors do, and the government could stand to gain.
The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs revoked the narcotic prescribing license of Dr. Myers. Their reason was that he prescribed 4.6 million dosage units of addictive drugs over an 18-month period in 2013 and 2014.
Now first, in response to this, drugs in and of themselves are not “addictive”. You can understand this better by reading the page on my website at www.sevenpillarstotalhealth.com/need-healing/healing-drug-abuse. And second, depending on what drugs are issued, the number of pills is not a judge of appropriate medical treatment. For example, if Dr. Myers primary care involves mostly pain management because his clinic was the only one willing to stick its neck out for the welfare of his patients, then one patient could have up to 110 pills issued per day. That would be, for example a treatment involving methadone which comes in 10 mg tablets and can be prescribed at 100 mg/day, along with a breakthrough medication, like Lortab, at 6/day, and possibly some other controlled drug for anxiety or muscle spasms. So a practice of say 200 patients, which would be small, could possibly issue 22,000 pills per day legitimately. That would equate to 8,030,000 per year, or 12,045,000 in 18 months. That makes 4.6 million dosage units seem a little small, now, doesn’t it? So maybe there is another reason why Doc Myers was shut down.
The revocation of his prescribing license took effect May 2, 2015 and remains in effect for one year. The bureau’s final order also directed Myers to pay a $25,000 administrative fine and says he cannot reapply for a prescribing license if he fails to pay the fine.
When did the DEA have the power to apply fines to doctor’s practices? This is news to me. I wonder if that is even legal, or if they are assuming power they don’t have. Is this another way to squeeze money out of doctors?
In the process of its administrative hearing, the lawyer for the government presented a witness, Tammy Tanksley, who claimed she went to the Wellness Clinic because her husband’s brother told her “she could get what she wanted” there.
Having been through the administrative hearing process myself, I can attest to the fact that it is a farce. Government witnesses are worthless as well. In my case, people were threatened, held in police headquarter for 6 hours, told to lie or they would go to prison, in order for the government to have “witnesses”. The testimony of Tammy Tanksley is probably mostly lies. Especially when she says that she never receive a physical exam. At any clinic, in order to become a patient, there is a physical. One of the witnesses at my trial stated he didn’t have a physical exam either. I know he didn’t volunteer that, because my initial visit always included an extensive physical. So he was put up to lie by the government, and I bet Tammy Tanksley was too. The fact that Ms. Tanksley volunteered that she was trafficking her drugs is prime evidence that she was a witness for the government through deal-making. She probably received immunity for her crime by testifying. That might have even been the door into attacking Dr. Myers and his associates. Ms. Tanksley could have been caught selling, and she made a deal to squeal on the clinic for immunity or lesser charges. That is standard government practice. Go where the money is.
Dr. Richard Brittingham, a Lawton physician, was the DEA “expert witness” Dr. Brittingham is a simple internist. How does he qualify as an “expert” in pain management? Even his work in hospice doesn’t make him an expert. He has sold himself out to the government for some purpose, even if it is only extra income.
Also standard with attacks on doctors is the support of the government by the state medical board. Dr. Myers’ case is a good example of how the state medical board is not designed for the good of the patient, but the agenda of the government. According to a news article, the state medical board was credited with the statement that
“The business model of the Wellness Clinic was designed to provide massive amounts of high-dose CDS (controlled dangerous substances) to patients under the veil of a legitimate pain management clinic.” A statement like that shows where the state medical boards stand—against doctors. They go on to say “The Wellness Clinic did so through the careful screening of new patients and firing of current patients coming under the scrutiny of law enforcement. In time, the Wellness Clinic became so well known as a pill mill that people were traveling to it from as far away as Colorado. Patients came from at least 10 different states, some traveling as far as 1,800 miles” per round trip.”
Now, it is completely appropriate for a pain management clinic to do thorough and careful screening of new patients. To not do so would be worthy of scrutiny. So in this case, Dr. Myer’s clinic should get an A+. Also, current patients should be fired if their actions are questionable as to appropriate use of their medications. If a patient has been scrutinized by law enforcement for inappropriate drug use, that would be legitimate reason to fire them, and another A+ rating for the doctor. Why should the news media use appropriate clinic action and make it sound so negative? Are they a part of the propaganda machine? You bet they are. That’s how they sell newspapers.
Does having people travel to your clinic make it a bad clinic? Or could it be that, because of Doc Myer’s well known reputation on the internet as a crusader for pain patient rights gave him a respect and trust that maybe, just maybe, his clinic will be left alone by the government. Having people travel for miles, or not, doesn’t make a difference to the government. I placed a 30 mile radius around my clinic, just to avoid the possibility of being called a “pill mill”, and it didn’t protect me. Naturally, they couldn’t use that negativism in the press or court against me, but it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. They can put up enough other lies and innuendoes to do the job. Now in the course of all this, Doc Myers has denied the allegations.
He has stated that he “at all times used sound clinical judgment in the treatment and diagnoses of patients.” He denied that he “failed to adequately examine or care for any patient” or that he “failed to discharge his professional duties and standard of care with respect to any patient.” Dr. Myers is a nationally recognized advocate of compassionate pain treatment who is being persecuted by overzealous government agents. “I have already experienced too much discrimination and racism by some law enforcement agencies in Oklahoma because I have the God-given moral conviction to treat poor chronic pain patients,” Myers wrote. “Please portray me truthfully as the historic poor and chronic pain patient advocate that I am,” he said.
One of Myers’ defenders is Robert Wiley of Mountain View, Ark. Wiley, 47, is national facilitator for the National Pain Patients Coalition, which Myers helped establish. He also is a patient of Dr. Myers.
“A lot of chronic pain patients, we’re kind of kicked to the side and treated like drug addicts, and we’re not,” said Wiley, who has had multiple back surgeries and a knee replacement. “I’ve been on this treatment for a long time, and it’s worked. It’s actually given me mobility, and a little bit higher quality of life than I would have without it.” Wiley characterized Myers as a compassionate family practitioner who provides patients like himself with effective and affordable treatment they could not receive in Arkansas. Wiley said he has reviewed the allegations contained in the Oklahoma actions and regarded them as bogus.
In reality, Dr. Myers is a civil rights activist and Baptist medical missionary, founder & president of the American Pain Institute (API), the founder & president of the Myers Foundation for Indigent Health Care and Community Development, one of the leading advocates for chronic pain treatment in America and the only African American physician in southern Seqouyah County, Oklahoma. In 2005, he organized a Juneteenth Frederick Douglass Freedom March in Washington, DC to bring attention to poor pain management in African-Americans. He also organized a 2003 and 2004, “America’s In Pain!” – MARCH ON WASHINGTON – “Silent No More!” calling for congressional hearings on the DEA War on physicians, pharmacists and pain patients. He considers the discriminatory actions taken by law enforcement against his ability to provide health care to the poor, another horrendous example of how racism pervades the justice system in America. He is especially concerned about the discrimination experienced by thousands of Sickle Cell Anemia patients who live in chronic pain by physicians, hospitals and clinics across the country.
Is it possible the government has attacked Dr. Myers specifically to “make an example of him” and by this action, squelch other physician-led patient advocacy organizations? Look what happened to Siobhan Reynolds. The government will stop at nothing to prevent people from exposing the truth behind their agenda.
Dr. Myers also leads the annual National Juneteenth Health Summit to address how increasing health care disparities and the tragic loss of African American physicians in the black community significantly contribute to the historic problem of “black genocide” in America. In my opinion, we should broaden the legal genocide plan of the government to include all poor, uninsured, elderly, and disabled Americans.
We must stop this flagrant attack on good doctors in the country. For anyone interested in promoting this cause, the API has established a Legal Defense Fund in support of Rev. Dr. Myers at http://americanpaininstitute.org/donate1.html.