By: Ronda Snyder
On April 18, 2022, Matt Byrne, a staff writer for the “Portland Press Herald,” wrote an article regarding Dr. Paul Gosselin whose license was suspended on November 18, 2021 on an emergency basis because of four complaints by healthcare professionals and not patients. Byrnes fails to mention who made the complaints against Dr. Gosselin. Again, the complaints were not from patients nor any of the individuals who received medical exemption letters.
Byrne writes “Dr. Paul Gosselin of Waterville could be reprimanded, fined or lose his medical license for his alleged failure to properly keep patient records in a dozen cases where he signed a letter urging that front-line workers be exempted from the vaccination mandate. Dr. Paul Gosselin, who ran a practice called Patriots Health, was suspended from practice in November by the state’s Board of Osteopathic Licensure after it found evidence that he was spreading misinformation about COVID-19 and had issued questionable exemption letters before a Nov. 1 vaccination deadline went into effect for certain Maine workers.”
- Byrne seems to have zero curiosity as to the definition of ‘misinformation’ and glides over that allegation though the Board later decided not to proceed with the allegation of misinformation.
- Byrne writes that Gosselin allegedly failed to properly keep patient records for individuals for whom Gosselin wrote exemption letters. An important question posed by MJN is when individuals go to the pharmacy, a fair or a vaccine event at McDonald’s do the healthcare professionals giving the vaccine keep detailed patient records or speak to their primary care physicians? MJN watched nearly the entire 9 plus hour hearing on April 14, 2022 and the prosecution continually asked about whether Gosselin spoke with the individuals” primary care doctor or whether he should have spoken with primary care doctors. Did the healthcare providers giving the vaccine at the events set forth above contact primary care doctors prior to giving a vaccine? Of course not but the Board and prosecutors are arguing that issuing a letter without speaking to a primary care physician is a far worse violation than actually giving a vaccine without following the same standard of care they are demanding of Gosselin for writing a letter containing his medical opinion.
- Byrne also doesn’t quote Maine law regarding medical exemptions which does not indicate a doctor writing a medical exemption must be a patient’s primary care provider nor does it state that the primary care provider must be contacted prior to issuance of an exemption letter. The law states (and Osteopathic Board of Licensure member Peter Michaud testified about this at a March 13, 2019 hearing regarding LD 798 where he said that physicians may simply write “in my medical opinion child X should not be immunized for Y because it is medically inadvisable.” ):
Byrne goes on to write “By late December, the case the board was considering had been narrowed to focus on a dozen exemption letters Gosselin issued in late October, shifting away from mention of COVID-19 science or Gosselin’s potential beliefs about how to best treat the disease.”
Of course the Board couldn’t focus on the science or Gosselin’s personal beliefs in its prosecution because it’s clear to any rational thinking person that the Board couldn’t continue with prosecution of these charges on their merits. What Byrne also fails to note is that while the Board was now focusing on medical exemption letters, the Board issued a subpoena on February 9, 2022 to Dr. Gosselin for patients who had nothing to do with the exemption letters and which patients the Board seemingly located by using the Prescription Monitoring Program which is a secure database that tracks opioid prescriptions. Why would the Board issue a subpoena for this type of patient if it was investigating medical exemption letters?
Byrne writes, “If the board decides against him, Gosselin could face a range of sanctions, from a reprimand to a revocation of his license and fines.”
The Board has already caused harm and sanctions to Dr. Gosselin and his patients. Gosselin’s license to practice medicine has already been suspended for 5 months (and it will be suspended for nearly 6 months before the defense can put on its case on May 12). Dr. Gosselin has already been punished without a hearing though he entered into a consent agreement not to write any further exemption letters, and his patients (including cancer patients) and others, were left high and dry by the Board’s suspension decision in November 2021. The Board told Dr. Gosselin to find his patients another doctor. I’m not sure whether the Board is aware, but it’s nearly impossible for a new patient to get into a new practice given the severe shortage of healthcare workers in Maine. The Board was told by Assistant Attorney General Lisa Wilson, that it was her legal opinion that the Board hadn’t met the threshold for an emergency suspension, but the Board proceeded nonetheless.
Byrne then goes on to tell the reader that Dr. Gosselin “has an extensive history of medical misconduct” and later in the article describes all of Gosselin’s disciplinary actions by the Board. Gosselin has already complied with the past actions of the Board and “did his time” as the saying goes. Gosselin’s past actions have nothing to do with the current case at hand but by Byrne pointing it out he certainly does his job by painting Gosselin as an undesirable. At trial in criminal cases, the judge quite often rules against bringing past acts into a current trial but Byrne and the PPH have no compunction about bringing it into the court of public approval (or disapproval as the case may be).
Byrne writes, “Gosselin, who has an extensive history of medical misconduct, testified Thursday that he did not keep records on the people who sought the vaccine exemption letters, never solicited a medical history, and did not require or seek medical records corroborating their assertions of past ailments that made vaccination risky or inadvisable. His attorney, F. Ron Jenkins, argued that he was not required to take those steps because the people seeking letters were not actually patients.”
Byrne then writes about the state’s expert witness, Dr. Kathryn Brandt. “An expert for the state disagreed. Taking medical histories, obtaining prior medical records and following a standardized and accepted process to determine the right medical course in a patient’s care – including whether to exempt someone from a vaccination – is a bedrock element of good medical practice while preventing harm, said Dr. Kathryn Brandt.”
Listen to Dr. Kathryn Brandt’s cross examination at the April 14, 2022 hearing by Attorney Jenkins (you may have to turn up your volume, because as they say in a Seinfeld episode, she is often a “low talking mumbler.”:
Probably one of the more ridiculous lines in Byrne’s article was this: “At the time of his suspension, Gosselin’s website advertised COVID-19 evaluations and alternative COVID-19 prevention and treatment options not approved by the Food and Drug Administration, including use of the antiviral malaria drug hydroxychloroquine and the animal deworming drug ivermectin (emphasis added), neither of which has proved effective or safe.”
Byrne knows, or should know, that Ivermectin is also a human drug that won a Nobel Prize for its use in humans. By calling Ivermectin “the animal deworming drug,” Byrne is either being intentionally obtuse, ignorant to Ivermectin as a human drug or misleading his readers.
Speaking of Portland Press Herald and what it writes and how it portrays an issue, when LD 798 was being debated and going through the legislature in 2019, State Representative Genevieve McDonald and a fellow member of Maine Families for Vaccines (proponents of LD 798 which was the bill that removed religious and philosophical exemptions to vaccines) had this conversation about what they thought would and would not appear in PHH articles. The “they” in the first comment referred to those who fought against LD 798 and who warned that this law would lead Maine to the slippery slope we are on today regarding mandating additional vaccines. Osteopathic Board of Licensure Member, Peter Michaud, was also a very invested and active member of this group. Michaud admitted he helped write the LD 798 legislation.
MJN has followed this case extensively, spoken and met with Dr. Gosselin, had discussions with his attorneys, written several articles, read countless legal documents and watched more than 9 plus hours of the April 14, 2022 Osteopathic Board of Licensure hearing with Dr. Gosselin. We are intimately familiar the case and the details thereof. We also note that the Osteopathic Licensing Board never provided any requested discovery to the attorneys for Dr. Gosselin so they could put on a full and robust defense of Dr. Gosselin.
The prosecution of Dr. Gosselin for writing medical exemptions appears to be a prosecution of a doctor who didn’t follow the prescribed Covid narrative. The Board has already dropped several of its initial charges including fraud and deceit but is continuing on its path to wage war on medical exemptions and the doctors who write them.
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