SLO doctor accused of gross negligence

October 6, 2019

Laleh Shaban M.D.

By KAREN VELIE

State prosecutors filed an accusation against a San Luis Obispo internist for having unlicensed employees perform medical procedures, ordering narcotics in her own name to give patients, and for neglecting patients. [Cal Coast Times]

For several years, multiple patients and former employees have reported allegations of wrong doing by Laleh Shaban M.D. to the Medical Board of California. The investigation, which focused on the treatment of five patients, resulted in six causes for discipline.

If found guilty, Shaban faces having her license suspended or revoked.

Shaban runs the Revive Medical Group, which moved recently from Morro Bay to San Luis Obispo, where she offers multiple services including skin care, weight loss, stem cell therapy, IV infusion therapy, genitalia rejuvenation, and concierge services.

Former employees complained that Shaban pushed them to up-sell a variety of high-priced therapies including IV vitamin supplements, stem cell therapy injections, beauty treatments, and concierge services.

“She tried to get nurses to up-sell patients with products,” said Sara Jorgensen, a registered nurse that used to work for Shaban. “It was not patient-centric care, it was profit motivated.”

A former office manager, who asked not to be named because she is currently working for another medical group, said Shaban would dilute Botox, treating many patients with a half-dose while charging for a full-dose. After one patient complained that she did not receive the full-dose, she was given another half-dose, and then suffered for months with a drooping eye and a swollen forehead, the former manager said.

In their allegation, prosecutors listed the patients by numbers and the non-licensed staff doing medical procedures by their initials.

In Nov. 2017, Patient 1 went to Shaban for a Botox treatment. The nurse practitioner recommended Dysport, a different toxin treatment, and the patient agreed. Dysport costs the provider about half the price per unit of Botox.

However, the nurse practitioner failed to inform Patient 1 about possible side effects from Dysport, nor did she get a written consent for treatment. The patient then suffered side effects, according to prosecutors.

For $3,500 a year, Shaban offers her patients a concierge package that includes a range of services such as same-day appointments, more personal contact with the doctor, and discounts on additional services such as cosmetic procedures and weight loss.

Patient 2 signed up for the concierge package, met with the doctor, and agreed to have “brain mapping,” also known as an EEG, according to prosecutors. Shaban directed an employee without a medical license to perform the procedure. Patient 2 then suffered what she thought was a reaction to the gel used during the EEG, even though she provided information about her allergy to Shaban, according to prosecutors.

Unable to get out of bed, and suffering with a twitching eye, Patient 2 asked to speak with Shaban. Instead of calling her back, Shaban returned her concierge fee and terminated her as a client, several staffers said.

Patient 3 was another concierge patient who Shaban suggested should receive a number of medical treatments, which non-licensed staff administered, according to prosecutors.

Shaban prescribed Patient 4 multiple medications for knee pain including opioids for three years, even though his orthopedic surgeon told him to take ibuprofen until he underwent a needed surgery.

Prosecutors charged Shaban with gross negligence in her treatment of Patient 5, a woman with a history of lung disease, recurrent pneumonia, and bacterial infections. Shaban diagnosed the patient with Addison’s disease without performing the required tests to confirm the diagnosis. Shaban then failed to refer Patient 5 to an endocrinologist, according to prosecutors.

In their accusation, prosecutors charged Shaban with repeated acts of negligence, gross negligence, assisting in the unlicensed practice of medicine, failure to maintain records of drugs provided to patients, drug violations, and general unprofessional conduct.

In addition to the alleged medical board violations, multiple former employees accused Shaban of failing to provide breaks as required by law, for asking employees to perform medical procedures they were not licensed to do, and to take out prescriptions in their own names for medications Shaban gave to her patients.

Jorgensen returned from maternity leave to the Revive Medical Group only to find her position had been filled, and she would be working in another area. Seven months later, Shaban terminated Jorgensen for “breast feeding” her child, Jorgensen said.

“She was a terrible doctor to her patients and a terrible boss to her employees,” Jorgensen said.

In 2017, the U.S. Department of Occupational Safety and Health Administration lodged four violations against revive Medical Group for unsafe work practices. Shaban paid four fines and the violations were resolved.

In the next few months, Shaban will have a chance to defend herself at a hearing in front of the Medical Board of California. Even though she is charged with six causes for discipline, she continues to see patients.

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autumn

Dr. Shaban is an opioid drug pusher. She should have her license revoked.


aye-caramba

This is very sad to read as Dr Shaban is a very smart and talented doctor . Money can cause one to lose your way , and I hope these accusations are adjudicated quickly . But I personally know of many folks she’s helped . But the Botox and weight loss fields are filled with sketchy folks


dela

It pains me terribly to read this article about someone who’s done so much good. Dr. Shaban was recommended to me by friends in the medical profession and I became her patient 15 years ago. During this time she’s helped me regain my health and dignity. When I was going through financial turmoil she treated me and my family free of charge. She’s kind, compassionate and above all a very gifted and knowledgeable physician. I’ve always admired her willingness and drive to improve her practice, making available to us, the patients, the benefits of the cutting-edge medical technology. During all these years as her patient I appreciated having access to all the cosmetic and medical services Revive MD offers but neither Dr. Shaban nor her staff, ever pushed cosmetic procedures, products or prescription medications on me.

15 years ago I was sick and discouraged; today I’m a healthy individual, following a healthy life style and diet, all because Dr. Shaban cared. My family and I attest to her being a professional, most ethical, compassionate physician.


DocT

Based on reading the article I see no reason why she should lose her license. She may be subject to fines and penalties by the Labor Board, and might possibly get put on probation by the CA Medical Board, but these “crimes” should not cost her license to practice. My opinion, you mileage may vary.


Prediction: All doctors who practice outside the insurance/hospital/pharmaceutical industry’s rigid model are going to come under scrutiny and be fined and regulated out of business.


Pay attention, you’ll hear other names of physicians mentioned in the same way as this.


Why? Because when you’re trying to build a socialized medicine scam for all Californians (except the elite of course) you can’t have renegade doctors giving people a choice to opt out. Remember these words and watch what happens……


slogal2020

As a former employee of this practice I could not be happier people are finally speaking up. She preaches that she is always there for her patients but in reality she won’t change a weekly hair appointment or lash fill to see someone who is sick. She ONLY cares about the money and if there is a slow day where finances aren’t high it must be our fault. Maybe if she spent more time focusing on her clientele then her looks this wouldn’t be happening. I feel sorry for her patients who pay $4500 a year to just get told to take daily vitamins you can get at the grocery store but they buy them from her and end up paying hundreds of dollars extra, on top of the yearly fee that really gets you nothing. You can tell on the Yelp and google reviews most of those come from employees, spouses or good friends as we are told to write them in order to get her ratings up. This place is a scam and I hope justice is brought forward.


mary margaret

Dr. Shaban was my primary care physician for 10 years. She was caring, thorough, intelligent and helped me regain my health. She was not only an excellent Doctor but also a wonderful compassionate human being. This breaks my heart. I paid for 2 years of concierge medical, but decided to switch since I was also paying $500 a month for medical insurance. I know three people whose lives were literally saved by her diagnosis and subsequent referrals to specialists. They are still in her practice today.


By the way, no cosmetic procedures were ever pushed or even mentioned or prescription medications.


Patient

I’ve been a patient of Dr Shaban’s for a number of years. Prior to finding her I’ve been struggling with health issues, spending significant time in the hospitals. Dr Shaban took me as a patient and didn’t give up until she got me back on my feet. She gave me my life back, my dignity and restored my faith in the medical profession. I have nothing but uttermost respect for her!


slomark

A doctor I trust recommended Shaban for me, for concierge service. But when I drove by her office on Higuera I was so turned off my all the tacky advertising of her various services plastered on the exterior of her building, that I decided not to meet with her. That it seems was a valid gut feel I had!


diamond

I was a patient when Shaban was still in Morro Bay. I went in with the sole purpose of receiving identical hormone replacement therapy, which they advertised. A few thousand dollars later, I still never got, and never did get the hormone replacement therapy. She practices bait and switch. She and her staff push HARD to up-sell ridiculously expensive vitamins, anti-aging products and weight loss fads. It didn’t take long to figure out who she was and what she was doing. She is driven by pure Profit so it’s no surprise to hear she is cutting corners at patients expense. I’m glad to see she is FINALLY being investigated.