Doctor treated young patients in Dayton despite suspension abroad

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – A doctor who once treated patients at Dayton Children’s Hospital is facing mounting questions.

2 NEWS Investigates discovered Dr. Jayaprakash Gosalakkal or Dr. Jay as he is known was suspended from practicing medicine in the United Kingdom at the same time he was caring for young patients at Dayton Children’s.

After 2 NEWS Investigates looked into the death of a baby by the name of Bayleey Blanton we received a tip that one of the doctors who treated her was and is facing allegations of poor treatment of patients overseas.

In January of 2012, Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine hired Dr. Jay as a professor and Dayton Children’s named him medical director, neurology division.

The hospital and Wright State say they never would have hired Dr. Jay had he not been able to get a license, so 2 NEWS Investigates sat down in Columbus with the man in charge of the State Medical Board of Ohio.

Pam Elliot: How thoroughly are you checking to make sure the answers are accurate?

Jonathan Blanton, State Medical Board of Ohio, Interim Director:  It’s very thorough.

The board granted Dr. Gosalakkal an Ohio medical license in December 2011. 2 NEWS Investigates obtained a copy of the doctor’s application. He checked “no” to questions about allegations and complaints against him. He might not have known about them in 2011, but when his license came up for renewal in July of 2012 he checked “no” again to questions about discipline, allegations, complaints, and suspension. That’s four months after he was suspended in the UK.

Jonathan Blanton: According to his application he answered no. That could be because he didn’t either know or he was deceiving the board.

Pam Elliot: And it doesn’t matter that the allegations were in another country?

Blanton: It would not, no.

It’s now been two years and two months that Dr. Gosalakkal has not been able to practice medicine in the UK. 2 NEWS Investigates called the General Medical Council there and confirm he’s still suspended.

2 NEWS Investigates obtained a list of the allegations against Dr. Jay. They include not providing “good clinical care” to patients and prescribing drugs “when it was not clinically indicated.” None of the allegations stems from Bayleey’s death. The complaints date back to August 2007 when he worked in England. Nothing is stopping Dr. Jay from treating young patients in Ohio.

Jonathan Blanton: I can’t speak about evidence we don’t have. Certainly something we’d want to know about and look further into. Pam Elliot:  In the interim though wouldn’t it just be safest to suspend him for now?

Jonathan Blanton: We don’t have any basis to suspend him for now. He is entitled to due process like anyone else who comes before the board.

Director Blanton says if the allegations were coming from another state there would be a lot more information sharing.

He says the State Medical Board of Ohio doesn’t have subpoena authority in the UK and the General Medical Council there didn’t alert the board to the suspension.  2 NEWS Investigates alerted the board.  Dayton Children’s apparently hasn’t said anything either.

“If there were issues at the hospital, the hospital is required to notify us we have thus far not received any,” said Blanton.

The hospital wouldn’t answer questions on camera, but did provide 2 NEWS Investigates a timeline.

March 19, 2013 Dayton Children’s heard from a reporter in England.  That led to a hospital investigation. March 25, 2013 Dr. Gosalakkal lost his clinical privileges because by hospital bylaws he was to have reported his suspension and he did not. May 1, Wright State terminated him.

WSU Boonshoft School of Medicine provided the following statement:

The Wright State Physicians background check was a standard criminal background check which included a 50-state search of the sex-offender database.
In addition, his references from Great Britain were checked and they were all positive.

2 NEWS Investigates tried to get a hold of Dr. Jay using addresses and phone numbers found on public records including his medical license in California.  We even called an attorney in England who had at one time represented him.  We never heard from Dr.Jay.

I did speak with a woman who said she was his wife. She told me he was in the UK.  She said he was going to take care of the suspension, but he’s retired and getting a pension from the UK.

About an hour meeting Dr. Jay’s wife, I got a phone call from local attorney Dave Duwel who said Dr. Jay was in Dayton and he wanted Duwel to get a hold of me.

Duwel said, “He thought he was the one making the complaint and all of a sudden he’s in jeopardy and he’s telling me that in April 2013 is when he first discovered all the bad stuff that was going on about him.”

However, his first hearing before the Fitness to Practice Panel in the UK was in April 2013 and a document obtained by 2 NEWS Investigates indicates Dr. Gosalakkal had an attorney present.

Pam Elliot: Does it trouble you you can’t find this doctor?

Jonathan Blanton: It does. There are certainly questions that we would like to ask, things we’d like to know. Certainly if he shows up in Ohio trying to practice, if he shows up in another state and he’s practicing. That’s serious, that’s significant.

“I think the hospital needs to answer. I think the state of Ohio needs to answer. This guy needs to be tracked down, said Cummins.

Dr. Jay had a hearing in England in November which will continue next month.  Once the panel considers all the evidence it will decide if he’s fit to practice in the UK.  Again, for now his license there is suspended.

Late Monday, Dr. Gosalakkal’s attorney said, “There is no evidence that any prior care by Dr. Jay had anything to do with the child’s unfortunate death.”

Also late Monday, for the first time, Dayton Children’s gave us specific information about Dr. Jay’s care of Bayleey stating he did not treat her in the month prior to her death.

If you want to file a complaint about a doctor or health professional in Ohio, here is a link you can use:

http://www.med.ohio.gov/consumer-complaint-form.htm 

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