The Washington Examiner is reporting that the Medical Examiner’s Office has reviewed its ethics code, which requires medical examines to include the “recommendation of counsel” in their work.
The review comes in the wake of the deaths of a number of autopsying patients in states including Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, who were administered lethal doses of the drug ketamine.
This could raise questions about the ethical oversight of the medical examiner’s office, which was created by the state legislature and has been criticized for its lax enforcement of medical ethics.
In 2016, a Washington Examiner investigation found the Medical Examiners Office did not disclose its ethics review to the public, and the review process was “extremely lax” and could “make it harder for prosecutors to bring criminal charges.”
The report was published last month, and was a part of a larger piece detailing the state’s criminal justice system’s ethical problems.
Here’s what the Washington Examiner reported on the review: The Washington Examiner’s investigation into the state medical examiner revealed that the Office of the Medical Examiners of Washington, DC, has received numerous complaints from medical examinees and coronavirus experts, who say the Office’s ethics code is lacking and does not adequately address the nature of the work, including the need for medical counsel.
On April 12, the Office released a response to a series of ethics complaints from doctors and coronavia experts, which they said they hope will change the way medical examins work and encourage them to report their misconduct to the Office.
They also wrote that the response is a “first step” to a long-term plan to improve the Office and its work.
“The response, which addresses both the concerns of physicians and coronovirus experts who were concerned about the lack of communication between the Office, the medical examinet, and coronavirosis experts, does not address the need to improve ethics and transparency within the Office,” the Office said in a written statement.
However, the statement also pointed out that the office has not released a detailed ethics code since the early 2000s.
“We want to be transparent and share information as we work to make Washington, D.C., the most ethical medical examiner in the country,” the office said.
According to the Washington Post, the ethics review was spurred by a number of deaths of people administered ketamine, and concerns were raised by coronaviral experts that there was a lack of transparency in the process.
Ketamine, a combination of the opiate painkiller methadone and the amphetamine-like substance PCP, is also known as “bath salts” or “ice,” and is often prescribed to treat addictions and mental health issues.
Last year, the FDA issued an advisory warning doctors that the drug may cause severe psychosis and death, and said it may exacerbate other conditions.
As part of the response, the Washington Office sent a letter to the FDA urging it to update the guidelines for ketamine prescribing, which it said “should reflect more information about its use, risks, and potential adverse effects.”
In response, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said, “The American Medical Association has long advocated for an update to the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) diagnostic criteria for ketamizolam, which should also reflect the latest research on its use in mental health disorders.”
(Read more: Killing doctors: Why do coronaviruses and opiates kill people?)
As it is, the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Medical Education said it will continue to “support the Office” in its review.
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