Doctor declared 'incompetent'

The 47 cases analyzed by experts reveal unnecessary exposure of patients to pain, unacceptable delays in treatment, poor record-keeping, inappropriate advice and improper behaviour, such as "screaming" at one patient, blaming another for her condition, and inappropriate removal of ovaries. The statement contains concise "opinions" of the three experts who found "below standard care" in 38 of the cases.

The Toronto Star
November 19, 2003

Doctor declared 'incompetent'
Surgery found to be unnecessary. Experts found care ‘below standard’.
Harold Levy

A Whitby obstetrician has been found to be "incompetent" by a discipline panel of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario after it heard evidence that he often performed unnecessary surgery and injured his patients in the process.

"Dr. (Errol) Wai-Ping did not appear to use medical management when it was appropriate. There seemed to be an inordinate rush to a surgical solution," Dr. Michael McGrath, an expert who examined nine cases, wrote in a "statement of facts" filed with the panel.

"One cannot but question the motive behind this."

At the outset of yesterday's hearing, lawyer Mary Thomson said her client was pleading "no contest" to the facts in the 46-page statement. Thomson later clarified that "it is fair to say that he does not accept all of the facts, but he doesn't challenge them in these proceedings."

Prosecutor Maureen Forestell will begin calling evidence at a penalty hearing that begins this morning. Wai-Ping faces sanctions ranging from censure to revocation of his licence.

The 47 cases analyzed by experts reveal unnecessary exposure of patients to pain, unacceptable delays in treatment, poor record-keeping, inappropriate advice and improper behaviour, such as "screaming" at one patient, blaming another for her condition, and inappropriate removal of ovaries.

The statement contains concise "opinions" of the three experts who found "below standard care" in 38 of the cases.

Former patient Carmel Casson said in an interview that she did not find it difficult to be in the same room as Wai-Ping at the outset of the hearing, "but as time went on and the more cases I heard, and the expert's conclusions, it made me angry."

Wai-Ping practised at Ajax-Pickering Hospital between 1992 and October, 2001, when his privileges were pulled. He was a subject in a Star series on medical incompetence and the secrecy surrounding the college complaints system.

Since Nov. 16, 2002, he has been restricted to performing non-surgical office assessments of patients, and has had to permit the college to monitor his accounts to OHIP.


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