2004-08-27 / Front Page

Local Doc Suspended, Put On Probation

By Brian Magoolaghan

A local doctor who recently agreed to a two-month suspension of his license and probation in the midst of medical misconduct charges claims the allegations were part of a government plan to hide the top-secret work he is doing.

Internist/Gastroenterologist Matthew Guy M.D., who agreed not to contest negligence allegations brought by the New York State Department for Professional Medical Conduct (DPMC) in May, told The Wave this week that he is “involved with work for the government” that he’s not at liberty to discuss.

“I didn’t do anything wrong… I did not do anything that harmed any patient,” Guy responded when asked if there was a government source that could corroborate his story. Meanwhile, his attorney and a Manhattan colleague say the charges were the result of a difference of opinion with the DPMC.

Guy’s practice is located at 119-15 Rockaway Beach Boulevard. He has also treated patients in his Neponsit home at 211 Beach 144 Street, according to records.

The doctor was charged with 18 incidents of misconduct. The allegations included gross negligence, gross incompetence, negligence, excessive testing and failure to maintain records.

In records dated May 2004, the DPMC accused Guy of performing six unnecessary rectal examinations and failing to properly evaluate and treat a 72-year-old woman, possibly suffering from colon cancer, who came to his office in October of 2000. The DPMC also alleged that Guy either failed to obtain consent or to record consent for some of the procedures he performed.

Guy was accused of performing four unnecessary rectal examinations, inappropriately administering Vitamin B-12, performing an unnecessary endoscopy, failing to obtain or note consent for certain procedures he performed and failing to properly evaluate or treat a patient suffering from epigastric pain, who visited his office over a three-year period.

The doctor faced similar charges involving an 87-year-old woman with stomach problems, a 71-year-old man with rectal bleeding and two patients suffering from colonic dysfunction.

Guy agreed to the license suspension and a three-year probation period, which requires the doctor to “enroll in and complete a continuing medical evaluation course in gastroenterology” and work “only when monitored by a licensed physician.”

The doctor’s attorney, Ronald G. Russo, said the allegations stem from a “medical judgment disagreement” between Guy and the DPMC over the treatment of just eight out of “hundreds and hundreds” of patients he has seen throughout his career.

Russo suggested that the terms of Guy’s suspension were an indication that his client was not accused of grievous acts. The New York State Department of Health made procedural exceptions in Guy’s case citing the “short duration” of his suspension after discussions with his attorney. The DOH declined to comment for this story.

Russo provided The Wave with a letter written by Maxwell Felton, M.D., in which Guy’s colleague and former supervisor defended Guy’s judgment.

“Ultimately the fact that none of these patients suffered a missed or incorrect diagnosis or adverse event on follow up supported Dr. Guy’s judgment. However, the [D]PMC felt otherwise…” Felton wrote in a letter to hospitals and insurance carriers, dated July 6.

Felton’s letter made no reference to Guy’s claim that has been conducting secret work for the government, and Russo was not able to shed light on his client’s comments to The Wave.

Under the terms of the DPMC agreement Guy, who has been licensed since 1971, can return to his practice after Labor Day.

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