I am seeking an attorney to sue Dr. Roger Levine and St. Joseph’s Hospital. Please forward this blog to anyone you might know. Anne C Woodlen
NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH
OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL CONDUCT COMPLAINT FORM
Office of Professional Medical Conduct
Central Intake Unit
150 Broadway, Suite 355
Albany, New York 12204-2719
Woodlen, Anne C
Syracuse, NY 13210
St. Joseph’s Hospital, Syracuse NY
Patient’s Name: Anne C Woodlen
Date of Birth: 12/18/46
When did this happen? April 16/17-April 29, 2013
Where did this happen? St. Joseph’s Hospital, Unit 3-6
Have you filed a complaint with anyone else? No
This horror all began when my primary care physician, Dr. James Tucker, in the Observation Unit of St. Joseph’s Hospital on April 17, asked me if I wanted to go to inpatient psychiatry voluntarily or under commitment. I said voluntary. Next thing I knew, I was being committed on a 2pc—two physician commitment. When I asked Tucker why, he said that’s the way psychiatry wanted it. I assume he meant Roger Levine, who is director of inpatient psychiatry at St. Joe’s.
I have known Levine forty years. More than a decade ago, I was in CPEP (Community Psychiatric Emergency Program) when Levine was head of it. It was the weekend and my psychiatrist, Dr. Nasri Ghaly, was away. The plan was that I would stay in CPEP until Monday morning when Dr. Ghaly would be back, then I would be transferred to him on Unit 3-6. Then, on Saturday, Levine walked in and said I was being sent to Upstate Medical Center. I was shocked, appalled and frightened. But-but-but, I said—Dr. Ghaly, 3-6—. No, Levine said. Upstate.
I told him that my psychologist, Dr. Paul Cohen, by phone had been following my progress through CPEP. As soon as Levine heard that a competent adult male was paying attention, he backed down, walked away, and nothing more was said about Upstate.
On Monday morning, when I was to go voluntarily to Dr. Ghaly and 3-6, Levine committed me. It was a malicious show of power, nothing more.
I have gotten CPEP and St. Joseph’s Hospital Unit 3-6 (inpatient psychiatry) investigated by the NYS Office of Mental Health two or three times. Levine has been the director of both. Some complaints have been filed under my own name. The last complaint was done as a “concerned citizen.” Dr. Ghaly, who works in CPEP, had told me of the overcrowding. CPEP was an 8-bed unit; he said they had 30 patients. Patients were sleeping on mattresses on the floor. St. Joseph’s wouldn’t dream of doing that to their cardiac patients; psychiatric patients, no matter.
I am very good at what I do, which is getting providers of substandard service investigated. It is always about the abuse of power by people in charge. Roger Levine is a total abuser of power. He provides neglect and abuse.
So, back whenever, I told Dr. Ghaly not to worry about the situation in CPEP (he is a doctor who cares for his patients, not a politician who fights the system). I told him I would take care of it. I made one phone call to OMH (Office of Mental Health) and got transferred three times before I ended up with the Woman Who Could Do Something. It’s all about knowing what to say so that you get the proper transfers. The Woman told me, among other things, that they had previously investigated CPEP and found such deplorable conditions that they were bringing rescue workers in by helicopter. Clearly, OMH had not followed up. They fixed the problem, left Levine in charge, and it went down the drain again.
So it took me one phone call with three transfers and in couple hours OMH had their people back investigating CPEP. Levine didn’t know that one was on me, but he did know that I testified against him in a public hearing. He sat in back with a muscle in his cheek twitching uncontrollably as I read a statement about a 9-year-old boy who was locked up in CPEP with a convicted murderer, and taken into the bed of a deranged housewife while all the staff stayed in the nursing station and wouldn’t come out on the floor.
If you go back and check early postings on my blog, “Behind the Locked Doors of Inpatient Psychiatry,” you will find postings about Levine (http://behindthelockeddoors.wordpress.com/2010/12/25/st-joseph%e2%80%99s-psychiatric-services-dr-roger-levine-part-one-continued/) (http://behindthelockeddoors.wordpress.com/2011/01/04/st-joseph%e2%80%99s-dr-roger-levine-part-two/) , and the testimony about the child (attached at the end of this complaint).
Roger Levine, M.D., believe me, has it in for me. That’s why, when Dr. Tucker called to get me a voluntary admission to Unit 3-6, he was told to commit me. And commit me he did. Roger Levine, as director of inpatient psychiatry, now had complete control over me.
That was Wednesday, April 17, and I was transferred from the Observation Unit to Unit 3-6. I was admitted to a standard wooden-box-and-foam-pad psychiatric bed, despite my multiple medical issues and the fact that I’d been in an electric hospital bed at home for fifteen years. The admitting nurse told me Levine was my attending. When I objected, she called and got me transferred to another psychiatrist (Dr. O’Connell? O’Connor?)
The next morning, I found out I was again back with Levine. He wouldn’t let me go.
On Thursday morning I had a hypoglycemic crisis followed by two bowel movements, followed by Levine. I told him I urgently needed to get to the bathroom again to poop. He said, “So call a nurse,” looking around for the call bell. It was on the other side of the room, way out of reach. Levine did nothing to meet my need for the bathroom. He stood over me and demanded that I answer his questions. He said, “This is psychiatry; you’re on psychiatry now. Are you suicidal? Are you suicidal? Answer the question!”
Then he left, after telling me that I’m a terrible person and that’s why no one will work with me. A 3-6 staffer would later ask “And this was therapeutic how?” (To be continued)