Association of American Physicians and Surgeons
|God, guns, and freedom|
|Starting arguments over Thanksgiving dinner|
|Persons of interest|
The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons is a small group of physicians who, under a false authoritative name, advocate for far-right conservative values in the practice of medicine. While purporting to have high regard for the Hippocratic Oath, "the sanctity of the patient-physician relationship, and the "practice of private medicine", it appears to treat these concepts as terms of art. Despite also calling itself "non-partisan", its main focus appears to be opposing abortion, vaccination, universal health care coverage and Obamacare in particular, and birth control.
These concerns evidence a particular contempt for women's health and wellness. The AAPS specifically opposes vaccination for HPV, a known cancer-causing virus for which a vaccine administered to young women is extremely effective. The group also makes the objectively false claim that there is a meaningful correlation between abortion and breast cancer.
Its website offers this ridiculous claim:
The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) is a non-partisan professional association of physicians in all types of practices and specialties across the country. Since 1943, AAPS has been dedicated to the highest ethical standards of the Oath of Hippocrates and to preserving the sanctity of the patient-physician relationship and the practice of private medicine. Our motto, "omnia pro aegroto" means "all for the patient."
The AAPS is listed as a quack organization by Quackwatch. The organization has made the questionable decision of engaging homeschool instructor and Conservapedia founder Andrew Schlafly as its general counsel to represent its interests in a variety of matters, including filing amici briefs in appellate litigation and even representing member physicians in disciplinary proceedings.
In 2016, their president, Melinda Woofter, stated:
We have witnessed an accelerated transformation of our profession away from individualized patient care toward politicized and collectivized “evidence-based medicine.” Without a doubt, this one-size-fits-all approach does not work and never can.
So, there you have it. Bring in the leeches and bloodletters, I guess.
Its physical address, 1601 N Tucson Blvd #9, Tucson AZ 85716, a suite in a medical center, is shared with a lot of other equally weird organizations including Doctors for Disaster Preparedness, the American Health Legal Foundation, the AAPS Educational Foundation (contact: Dr Jane Orient), Physicians for Civil Defense (contact: Dr Jane Orient), the Southwestern Institute of Science (contact: Dr Jane Orient), and the Southern Arizona Association for Play Therapy.
Many of these activities appear to violate their "Patient's Bill of Rights", which, among other things, states:
(the right) to refuse third-party interference in their medical care, and to be confident that their actions in seeking or declining medical care will not result in third-party-imposed penalties for patients or physicians
- AAPS files lawsuit against FDA to overturn approval of "Plan B" morning after pill for over the counter use by women over 18.
- Fight against "Sham Peer Review": The AAPS recognizes "sham peer review" as an abusive use of such entities as hospital by-laws and disciplinary committees to exclude physicians for other-than legitimate or the explicitly-stated reasons.
- Defense of a physician convicted of improper narcotic prescribing while operating a clinic to treat patients with chronic pain.
- Fighting mandatory vaccination.
- Fighting against mandated mental health parity, which is advocated by the National Alliance on Mental Illness, American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association, and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
- Promoting contracting between physicians and patients without government or insurance company involvement.
- Fighting socialized and single-payer healthcare.
- Fighting to "debunk" Shaken baby syndrome, and to link it to vaccines rather than abuse.
- Advocating for so-called "freedom of conscience" to allow pharmacists to refuse to fill lawful prescriptions. This would appear to interfere with a patient's right "to refuse third party interference in their health care".
- Fighting abortion, not simply through moral objection, but also by attempting to link abortion to unrelated health problems, including breast cancer.
- Advocating against the sale of organs for transplant.
- Advocating against organ donation in cases where brain death is unclear.
- Advocating against withdrawal of care, as in the Terri Schiavo case, including misrepresenting the results of autopsy in the case.
The AAPS publishes the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons (JPANDS), until 2003 called the Medical Sentinel. The journal is not considered a valid, peer-reviewed journal for inclusion in major scientific databases, and has been listed by Quackwatch as "Fundamentally Flawed". An article in the "journal" was used in 2008 to justify a petition against proposed solutions to the problem of global warming.
- Russell Blaylock, M.D., member of the editorial staff. Publishes the Blaylock Wellness Report. Flagged by Quackwatch, among others.
- John Cooksey, M.D., former Republican congressman from Louisiana. Ran for the Senate in 2002 but lost in the GOP primary after controversy resulting from him comparing Middle Eastern turbans to "diapers fastened by fan belts."
- David McKalip, M.D., circulated a Photoshopped picture of Barack Obama as a supposed "witch-doctor" (actually Papua New Guinean in traditional dress) with a bone through his nose, on a Tea Party mailing list.
- Joseph Mercola, D.O., Runs Mercola.com. Flagged by Quackwatch.
- Ron Paul, M.D., former Republican congressman from Texas and erstwhile Republican Presidential candidate.
- Rand Paul, M.D., son of Ron Paul and current Republican senator from Kentucky.
- Paul Broun, M.D., Republican congressman from Georgia. He is a passionate critic of Obamacare. He is also an admitted Young Earth Creationist and, despite being a physician, doesn't believe in embryology.
- Jane Orient, M.D., executive director, science fiction writer, signatory to A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism, and contact for many organisations operating out of the same office.
- Tom Price, Donald Trump's first Secretary of Health and Human Services, now ex Secretary of Health and Human Services. Confirmed by a 52-47 vote in the Senate in an overnight session. On a party line vote. Manufactured health crises over country.</ref> At a CNN town hall in March 2017, he suggested vaccination policy should be left up to the states.After first glossing over the town hall attendee's original question that mentioned vaccine choice.</ref> He served for 231 days, when he resigned in the wake of a scandal involving the use of about $1 million in agency operating funds to charter private jets to fly to Philadelphia, and for utilizing US military aircraft to travel to Asia and Europe. Presumably so he wouldn’t catch whatever the commoners in coach class were likely contagious with.
According to their literature:
AAPS members believe this patient-physician relationship must be protected from all forms of third-party intervention.
- The organization, a third party to the Schiavo case, interfered in the relationship between the patient's advocate and physicians, even helping to bring the power of the federal government to bear on a single medical case.
- AAPS advocates for so-called "freedom of conscience" where patients are denied legal drugs, treatments, and information based on the morals of the provider rather than the patient.
- AAPS views patient advance directives designed for dignity at the end-of-life as a financial plot to kill patients in order to save money.
The society's pseudojournal JPANDS has published an article on the supposed link between breast cancer and abortion. It has been roundly debunked. Near the end of the 2008 Presidential Election the "journal" published a claim that Barack Obama uses neuro-linguistic programming to exercise mind control over people at his rallies.
On their website, former AAPS president Dr. Lawrence Huntoon describes peer review boards which review complaints against doctors as "an insidious and spreading evil which threatens to destroy not only the integrity of the medical profession but quality care for all patients."
Stepping into the fray
In the midst of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, they released a survey purporting to show that a large number of medical professionals harbor grave concerns about Hillary Clinton's health; specifically, that her health is in such a poor state that it "could be disqualifying for the position of President of the U.S." Of course, who these medical professionals are is nowhere to be found.
What's that? Did I hear you say they could be the doctors in the AAPS?!1?!?!11!?! That's patently absurd. Don't be ridiculous. Are you high?
- An analysis of the organization's pseudojournal
- The pseudojournal itself
- AAPS official website
- Thorough evisceration of the AAPS by Kathleen Seidel on her neurodiversity.com blog *doffs cap*
- AAPS Statement on Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine (updated Feb 5, 2007)
- MEDICAL JOURNAL: POLITICAL CORRECTNESS PREVENTS WOMEN FROM LEARNING ABOUT ABORTION RISKS
- Questionable Organizations: An Overview, Stephen Barrett, M.D.
- Their mission
- American Health Legal Foundation. Archived from charityblossom.org, 2013.
- Physicians For Civil Defense. Archived from charityblossom.org, 2013.
- Southwestern Institute Of Science Ltd. Archived from charityblossom.org, 2013.
- Southern Arizona Association For Play Therapy. Archived from charityblossom.org, 2013.
- "AAPS, CWA, FRC and SDW vs. Food and Drug Administration". AAPS Online. April 12, 2007. http://www.aapsonline.org/judicial/planb.php.
- Carroll, John. "AAPS Raises Alarm over Sham Peer Review". Louisiana Medical News. April 2007. http://www.louisianamedicalnews.com/news.php?viewStory=934.
- "United States of American v. Ronald A. McIver - Petition for Rehearing En Banc". http://www.aapsonline.org/painman/mciver.pdf.
- "'Hands Off Our Kids' Coalition Wins in Texas! - Watch Fox News Channel 'The Big Story' with John Gibson - Tonight at 5 pm EDT". AAPS Online Alerts. March 14, 2007. http://www.aapsonline.org/alerts/03-14-07.php.
- "Hearing on Mental Health Parity - Statement of Michael D. Ostrolenk, MA, MFT". March 26, 2007. http://www.aapsonline.org/testimony/mhparity.pdf.
- "Promoting Parity for the Treatment of Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorders". American Medical Association. http://22.214.171.124/han/JAMA/https/ssl3.ama-assn.org/apps/ecomm/PolicyFinderForm.pl?site=www.ama-assn.org&uri=/ama1/pub/upload/mm/PolicyFinder/policyfiles/DIR/D-345.992.HTM
- "Help Support Mental Health Parity". American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. 2007. http://www.aacap.org/cs/legislative_action_110th_congress/help_support_mental_health_parity.
- "THE PINNACLE OF SOCIALIZED MEDICINE". AAPS News. AAPS Online. April 2007. http://www.aapsonline.org/newsletters/apr07.php.
- "Shaken Baby Syndrome". AAPS Online. http://www.aapsonline.org/sbs.htm.
- "Medical Ethics - Abortion - Freedom of Conscience". AAPS Online. http://www.aapsonline.org/ethics/foc.php.
- "Studies denying abortion-breast cancer link debunked". News of the Day... In Perspective. AAPS Online. December 13, 2005. http://www.aapsonline.org/nod/newsofday236.php.
- "Legal Implications of a Link Between Abortion and Breast Cancer". Schlafly, Andrew L., Esq. 2005. http://www.jpands.org/vol10no1/aschlafly.pdf.
- "Transplant tourism to China". News of the Day... In Perspective. AAPS Online. April 24, 2007. http://www.aapsonline.org/nod/newsofday417.php.
- "Donation after cardiac death expanding rapidly". News of the Day... In Perspective. AAPS Online. March 19, 2007. http://www.aapsonline.org/nod/newsofday402.php.
- "Terri Schindler Schiavo Case". AAPS Online. http://www.aapsonline.org/ethics/terris.htm.
- "Schiavo autopsy results misrepresented". News of the Day... In Perspective. AAPS Online. June 21, 2005. http://www.aapsonline.org/nod/newsofday186.htm.
- Barrett, Stephen, M.D. Nonrecommended Periodicals. Quackwatch, 15 September 2008.
- Robinson, Arthur B., Noah E. Robinson, and Willie Soon. Environmental Effects of Increased Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide.
- Global Warming Petition. Petition Project, Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine, 1998.
- Webglimpse Search Results for "Bayblock". Quackwatch. Named in three different articles on medical quackery.
- Did I come late to the game? White Coat Underground. October 2, 2007.
- Christopher Hitchens, Remembering Ari Fleischer's reign of terror. Slate Magazine.
- Zachary Roth, Conservative Activist Forwards Racist Pic Showing Obama As Witch Doctor. Archived from TPMMuckraker, 23 July 2009.
- Webglimpse Search Results for "Mercola". Quackwatch. Named in six different articles on medical quackery.
- Rep. Paul Broun, MD speaks to Doctors about Healthcare Reform (AAPS YouTube)
- Matt Pearce, U.S. Rep. Paul Broun: Evolution a lie ‘from the pit of hell’. Los Angeles Times, 7 October 2012.
- E-book only
- Charles P. Pierce, The GOP's Search for a New House Majority Leader Is a Race to the Bottom. Esquire, 29 September 2015.
- Peter Baker, Health Secretary Tom Price Resigns After Drawing Ire for Chartered Flights. Archived from The New York Times, 29 September 2017.
- Ted Barrett, Senate confirms Tom Price for HHS post. CNN, 9 Februuary 2017.
- HHS Secretary Tom Price Says States Should Decide on Vaccines. The Daily Beast, 15 March 2017.
- Price’s private-jet travel breaks precedent by Rachana Pradhan and Dan Diamond. Politico
- Price took military jets to Europe, Asia for over $500K by Rachana Pradhan and Dan Diamond. Politico
- Dependency and Death. AAPS Online, June 2005.
- Carroll, Patrick S., M.A. Breast Cancer Epidemic: Modeling and Forecasts Based on Abortion and Other Risk Factors. 2007.
- Induced abortion does not increase breast cancer risk. Fact sheet N°240. World Health Organization. June 2000.
- Tag-Teaming with Orac: Bad, Bad Breast Cancer Math in JPANDS. Good Math, Bad Math. ScienceBlogs. October 25, 2007.
- Abortion and breast cancer: The Chicago Tribune feeds the myth. Respectful Insolence, ScienceBlogs, October 25, 2007.
- Oratory—or hypnotic induction? News of the Day... In Perspective. AAPS Online, October 25, 2007.
- Rand Paul part of AAPS doctors' group airing unusual views. Courier Journal, 24 September 2010.
- The survey (September 9, 2016)