PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. - A Palm Beach Gardens man who calls himself "doctor" even though his license was revoked seven years ago, was arrested and booked into the Palm Beach County jail this morning after investigators say he was practicing medicine illegally.
Douglas Phillips, 69, was charged with unlicensed practice of a health care professional and was released from jail four hours later after posting $3,000 bail.
The investigation began in April 2010 when the Florida Department of Health received a written complaint from Betty Balcar, a former patient's wife, saying her husband was in the hospital for three weeks in July 2009 and was diagnosed with renal failure. The doctor told her husband that the failure was caused by herbal necropsy, a Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office police report says.
Her husband, Bruce, visited Phillips' office, 2541 Metrocentre Boulevard, numerous times throughout 2006 to 2009 and was given herbs for treatment. Invoices show Balcar was billed for sensitivity cleaning, electrical stimulus, bacteriologic study and dental payments.
The Palm Beach County Multi Agency Diversion Task Force teamed up with the Department of Health and the investigators found that Phillips license was revoked by the Florida Board of Dentistry in October 2004 as a result of failing to keep adequate records, failing to maintain malpractice insurance, and practicing below the standard of care, the report says.
In June 2010, Department of Health investigators came to Phillips' office as undercover patients. Upon arrival they noticed a sign on Phillips door: Theocentric Holistic Healing and Counseling with Dr. Douglas J. Phillips.
The investigator told Phillips he was there for treatment of stomach pains. After examining the investigator using strength tests, Phillips concluded the investigator was suffering from "chronic stomach imbalance" and prescribed herbal remedies for treatment, the report says.
He told the investigator he was a dentist and left the field to be a "naturopathic doctor".