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A Detroit-based doctor has surrendered his medical license as he is been accused of misdiagnosing epilepsy in approximately 200 children. He also had agreed to pay a $5,000 penalty in a settlement which was accepted by state regulators on Wednesday.
Attorney Brian McKeen, who had won two trials over Dr. Yasser Awaad regarding his treatment to children said that it is a great day for patients that was awaiting since long. His office had filed a complaint against Awaad in 2018, many years after treating the children as a pediatric neurologist at Oakwood Healthcare in Dearborn, now a part of Beaumont Health.
The complaint read that between 1997 and 2007, Dr. Awaad misdiagnosed around 250 patients as suffering from epilepsy or seizure disorders on the basis of electroencephalograms which were neither performed nor interpreted properly. Few of these patients were also misdiagnosed as suffering from attention deficit disorder or other autistic spectrum disorders. Children were given medication which was not necessary and could be harmful and their real illnesses were not addressed.
Awaad agreed with the regulators that all the allegations against him could be treated as true to resolve the complaint. He also said that he did not actively practiced medicine in Michigan since 2007. A disciplinary panel at the Michigan Board of Medicine accepted the agreement in a meeting held by video conference. There was no response from Awaads attorney to a request for their comment.
McKeen represented many patients who have accused Awaad of malpractice. During a trial last year, he said the doctor was operating a "gravy train of fraud" by frequently ordering expensive EEG tests.
Awaads attorney told judges that it was "outrageous and preposterous" to claim that Awaad intentionally tried to harm Mariah Martinez when she was 9 years old. The panel of judges awarded more than $3 million to Martinez, while a judge reduced it to $846,000 due to state caps on malpractice claims.
In another case in October, a jury awarded almost $2.8 million to a former Awaad patient. This verdict is to be reduced, too.
Awaads agreement to give up his medical license is not his first encounter with supervisors. A similar complaint was filed in 2011 over his epilepsy diagnoses. He had paid a fine of $10,000 and agreed to have his work reviewed by another doctor for a certain period.
Source: ET Healthworld