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My Rather Public Reply To The Threat Made Against Me By The American Board Of Internal Medicine
I published an Op-Ed to defend from the attacks by State Medical Boards and National Certifying Bodies against experts whose opinions conflict with numerous, demonstrably false "Covid Narratives."
A month ago, I received a letter from the American Board of Internal Medicine accusing me of spreading misinformation and threatening to revoke my certification based on their new policy “against misinformation.” I initially laughed and tossed it into a pile of papers, dismissing it as just the latest in a string of (non-evidence based) attacks on me from.. well, everywhere. I will include the letter and my Op-Ed response to it below.
First, for the non-doctors among my subscribers (many of you?), you probably need a quick primer as to the differences between “Licensing” Boards and “Certifying” Boards in Medicine.
To practice medicine in the United States, you first need to be licensed by a State Medical Board (not done at the Federal level thank God). Meaning, when you graduate from medical school and then complete a “residency” training program, you can apply for a license to practice medicine in the state where you will be caring for patients. Fun fact: the word “residency,” which describes the apprenticeship model of training after medical school (typically lasting 3-8 years depending on specialty), is called that because physician “apprentices” literally used to live and work in the hospital 24-7, i.e. they were “residents” of the hospital!
Anyway, most doctors see patients in only one state and thus one state license is all you need. If you want to see patients in more than one state (like many Tele-Health practices do), you have to apply for multiple state licenses which cumulatively can add up to a fortune. A fun fact that I discovered while applying for licenses to expand my COVID and Vaccine Injury Tele-Health practice: Louisiana charges $250 for a license for 2 years while California asks for $1500. Clown world.
Now, before we get to the ABIM letter, let’s first talk about what is happening at my state medical licensing board which actually has the authority to revoke my license. That Board has relayed to 11 different complaints they received, but not one was from a patient. All were from anonymous doctors, pharmacists, and laypeople complaining to them that I disseminate mis-information around ivermectin. My responses to these ill-informed complaints were almost fun to write as it was like shooting fish in a barrel with a machine-gun of data. I am still waiting to hear of my punishment but my sense (hope) is that there will be nothing substantive. One of my many defenses was citing the increasing number of states passing legislation to protect doctors who use repurposed medicines from such Board actions. However, although I have multiple state licenses, if one state revokes your license, you have to inform the others, and they might follow suit. Ugh.
So, what is the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) then? The ABIM is a “Certification” Board, with their certification purportedly denoting a higher level of knowledge and skill than the supposedly “average,” non-Board certified physician. To achieve this distinction, all you need to do is pay an increasingly obscene Board exam fee and then pass the test. It should go without saying that these tests have high passing rates. Anyway, pass the test, and voila, you become “Board Certified.” It gives off an appearance of higher credibility so you can introduce yourself or be introduced with, “Dr. Kory is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Disease, and Critical Care Medicine.” It also helps when you serve as an expert witness in malpractice cases, such as when I was the expert witness in the George Floyd civil suit (I definitely would not have been selected if I was not Board certified - the opposing lawyer would have been able to present me in an unfavorable light as a result).
Fun fact: When I was becoming an expert in critical care ultrasonography, I studied, paid for, and passed the National Board of Echocardiography Exam, but I did not receive a board certification from them because… they would not bestow that on a non-cardiologist! They instead granted me “Testamur” status, a word meaning witness. I “witnessed” the exam I guess. Whatever. Another fun fact is that at the time I was one of the very few non-cardiologists who had ever taken, let alone passed the exam. Two reasons for that; one is that nobody outside of cardiology ever tried to learn echocardiography to that extent (I studied and practiced obsessively for months) and second is that it was a notoriously difficult exam with around a 65% passing rate even among cardiologists. That is why the absolute joy I felt when I received the letter telling me I passed was not one bit lessened when I discovered I had literally passed the exam… by one correct answer.
Anyway, every physician specialty and sub-specialty has one of these “Certifying” organizations which perform increasingly deeper wallet biopsies over time. All these boards are governed under the umbrella of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), a.k.a El Capo de Tutti Capi. The ABIM itself only certifies adult medical (not surgical) specialties, i.e. cardiology, pulmonology, gastroenterology, rheumatology etc. Note that internal medicine is just one of the “5 families” that physicians belong to, i.e. Internal Medicine, Surgery, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, and Ob-Gyn.
Recently, when the ABIM added more costly and burdensome requirements beyond the exam, doctors across the country revolted and brought a class action lawsuit. They argued that the ABIM was a monopoly extorting money out of physicians purportedly with the goal of improving knowledge and skill but without evidence that it was actually accomplishing that. The suit actually argued that the ABIM's MOC program was designed chiefly to produce revenue for their board as detailed in this article by the investigative journalist and Pulitzer prize finalist Kurt Eichenwald. Further, they fought the ABIM because increasing numbers of health insurance companies and health systems began requiring doctors to be “Board Certified” in order to be employed or part of a health insurance network. Hence the feeling of being extorted by a monopoly power.
As a result of the above, the ABIM is and has been under a deep investigation of the financial shenanigans by Board members related to the their new program called “Maintenance of Certification (MOC)” which added significant fees and educational requirements of physicians wanting to become or remain “Board Certified”. I include some snippets published in the press:
Following the Story by Following the Money | Forensic Accounting Investigation of Medical Boards
"If you care about medical governance and financial COI and you’re *not* already following @CharlesPKroll , you’re doing it wrong. " Bryan Carmody, M.D.
Charles P Kroll , CPA (retired) is a healthcare forensic accountant and consulting CFO with over 25 years of medical industry experience. He provided analysis to the Minnesota Attorney General's office during their investigation and resulting break up of the Medica-Allina Health System and exposed backroom dealing at UnitedHealth Group.
His on-going investigation of the American Board of Internal Medicine's Maintenance of Certification (MOC) "Ponzi scheme" was featured in "An American Sickness : How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back" by Elisabeth L. Rosenthal, editor-in-chief of Kaiser Health News and Kurt A. Eichenwald's 4 part Newsweek exposé of ABIM.
Elizabeth E. Tremblay is a research analyst and accounting student with an extensive background in genealogy and historical records. In 2018, they partnered to investigate the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), 24 Member Boards, related organizations, and employee retirement plans. Independent, investigative journalists are following their research and findings suggesting the main purpose of MOC is to amass -- and hoard -- tax-free wealth for the Boards, fund employee retirement plans and finance pet real estate projects.
(Umm… finance “pet” real estate projects??). Oof. I knew they were up to no good but this is insane.
In 2021, Kroll & Tremblay expanded the scope of their research to the Medical Education Boards , including the Association of American Medical Colleges, Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates, Federation of State Medical Boards, National Board of Medical Examiners, National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners and National Resident Matching Program. "Chuck helped expose questionable financial management at The American Board of Internal Medicine."
On behalf of all physicians, thank you for all of your efforts. Keep up the great work." ~ C. Michael Gibson, M.D. | Harvard Professor and Founder of http://Wikidoc.org
"Charles defines integrity and was instrumental in exposing questionable financial practices at the American Board of Internal Medicine that have proven remarkably disruptive to the costly and largely unaccountable medical specialty board certification industry in the United States. He should be commended for his efforts and the entire US physician population thanks him for his tireless forensic accounting efforts." ~ Westby G. Fisher, M.D. | University of Chicago Professor and Co-Founder of http://PracticingPhysician.org
Anyway, when I laughed at the ABIM letter, it was because I am now in private practice where I am my own boss and I don’t (can’t) take insurance so losing my Board Certification would have zero negative impact on my ability to care for patients. However, it started to slowly dawn on me that if they took away my ABIM Certification, I might not be able to work in an ICU again (not that I see that happening until the system comes to its senses). So maybe it isn’t so funny. Kind of like everything else going on in the world.
Anyway, here is the ABIM letter to me followed by my Op-Ed published in RealClear Politics (note I wrote the Op-Ed before starting work on my “official” response letter).
My favorite part of the letter is on the last page where they promise me that after they sanction me (strip me of my certification?), I will get to appeal… in a hearing with a panel of physicians! Bring. It. On.
I also have to laugh because I am picturing Steve Kirsch burning with jealousy over this opportunity. He has been trying to get someone, anyone from medical academia or the health agencies to come out from behind closed doors and participate in an open scientific debate of the data (not) supporting the “safety and efficacy” of the mRNA vaccines. He has even been offering experts $1 million to do so.. and they have all refused. Well Steve, looks like I get to participate in one of those debates for free!
Now, my Op-Ed:
Stop the War on Doctors
By Pierre Kory
July 02, 2022
Anyone in America who deviates from the group-think enforced by public health bureaucrats runs the risk of cancellation. Politicians, parents, comedians, teachers – now they’re even coming for the doctors.
As a lung and ICU specialist, I have practiced medicine for 14 years and successfully treated more than 450 patients during the pandemic. Long before anyone had heard of Covid-19, I was studying and implementing cutting-edge methods to treat critically ill patients. I’m the Senior Editor of a best-selling textbook in my field, now in its second edition, which has been translated into seven languages.
For my efforts, I now find myself on the receiving end of “disciplinary sanctions” from the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM), who sent me a letter threatening “suspension or revocation of board certification.”
The “sin” threatening to end my medical career was my unwillingness to go along with Fauci’s monolithic vaccines-above-all-else strategy. The failure of this approach is plain to see, and anyone with an ounce of curiosity knows there are many methods of treating the virus.
Ivermectin is one of them. This cheap, readily available generic medicine is approved by the FDA for certain uses in humans – but not for Covid-19, despite 85 controlled trials from around the world demonstrating its effectiveness. In Brazil, the largest study to date found a reduction in Covid mortality rate of 70%. In India, the second most populated country in the world, the drug has been credited with near eradication of the disease. Studies attempting to discredit ivermectin have been debunked again and again.
Other trials, such as the recent TOGETHER trial, are designed to fail from the start to drive a desired narrative. In the National Institutes of Health’s ACTIV-6, despite starting the majority of patients on treatment after five days of Covid-19 symptoms at a lower than recommended dose, they found a statistically significant reduction in the time to recovery, particularly among the most severely ill. Unsurprisingly, major newspapers reported that the study showed ivermectin was ineffective.
Despite ivermectin’s proven effectiveness, in the opinion of the ABIM, advocating for its usage is a form of “disinformation” and carries the penalty of losing one’s medical license and livelihood.
Throughout the pandemic, I’ve maintained an open mind, analyzed what works for patients, discussed strategies with fellow doctors, and conducted my own extensive research. When new data arose that changed my understanding, I admitted as much and changed course—like with the vaccines. If only the powers that be at the ABIM and our government could say the same.
Consider the evolution of accepted facts about Covid-19 safety measures from Fauci and his ilk. Despite government mandates, neither lockdowns nor cloth masks prevent transmission. They never have. It turns out former Surgeon General Jerome Adams had it right when he tweeted in March 2020 that masks are, “NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus” – a comment for which he was pilloried. We are only beginning to learn the impact of the societal costs of these early preventative measures, a price our children who were kept home from school will be paying for years.
Second, there is no evidence the vaccines stop Covid-19, despite the constant lecturing from the Biden Administration and the mainstream media. In the United States and globally, cases continue to rise and fall without any correlation to the pace or percentage of population vaccinated. This is not what we were promised. In 2021, Fauci said vaccinated people were “dead ends” for the virus, and President Biden declared, “You’re not going to get COVID if you have these vaccinations.” Today, approximately 110,000 cases are announced daily in America, where more than two thirds of the population is fully vaccinated.
There is a backlash brewing in America right now, and it goes beyond inflation rates and gas prices. People are tired of arrogant public officials and compromised institutions who believe they have all the answers but constantly get it wrong and make no apologies as they steamroll those who don’t support the current narrative. The ABIM’s sudden (and suspiciously well-funded) persecution of doctors who stray from the party line is only the latest example.
Doctors on the ABIM’s board and across the country need to stand up against this witch hunt. It’s demeaning to honest doctors and dangerous to the patients we’ve dedicated our careers to serving.
Pierre Kory, M.D., is president and chief medical officer of the Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance.
I just want to say how much I appreciate all the subscribers to my substack, and especially the paid ones! Your support is so greatly appreciated.
P.S I opened a tele-health clinic providing care not only in the prevention and treatment of acute COVID, but with a specialized focus on the study and treatment of both Long-Haul and Post-Vaccination injury syndromes. If anyone needs our help, feel free to visit our website at www.drpierrekory.com.
P.S.S I am getting professional help (hah!) to write a book about what I have personally witnessed and learned during Pharma’s Historic Disinformation war on ivermectin. Pre-order here for: