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Medical board takes no action

Reprimands Beamer for error in judgment


by: HOLLY M. GILL - Dr. Leland 'Bud' BeamerOne year after an error in judgment disrupted the long and honorable medical career of Dr. Leland "Bud" Beamer, the Oregon Board of Medical Examiners has decided that Beamer will keep his medical license.

In a recent vote, the board unanimously decided to take no action against Beamer, but reprimanded him for his lapse in judgment.

Just over a year ago, Beamer was put on administrative leave from his position as an emergency room doctor at the former Mountain View Hospital, where he had worked since 2007.

The action resulted from an incident which occurred after a 24-hour shift in the ER, from Aug. 3 to Aug. 4, 2012.

Beamer, who had worked for 33 years as a physician and surgeon with Madras Medical Group before going to work in the ER, was concerned about his seriously ill dog, and took a vial of ketamine home in case the dog needed pain relief.

On Monday, Aug. 6, 2012, Beamer returned the unused medication to the hospital, but was immediately placed on administrative leave and later dismissed for taking a controlled substance.

The hospital board took no action to suspend his privileges, and instead awaited a decision from the Oregon Board of Medical Examiners.

Even though he had worked as a physician for 40 years, Beamer found himself out of a job.

"After six months of realizing that everything that we had worked for was about to be turned over to the bank, I found work with the Department of Corrections," said Beamer, noting that his properties are now up for sale.

"At 70 years of age and under investigation, I could not find work elsewhere. I had worked at Deer Ridge and was known within the system. After investigating the nature of my misdoing, they found nothing disqualified me from employment and hired me as a clinic physician at the prison in Pendleton," he said.

Expressing gratitude for the job, Beamer said that, "Things have worked out very well," despite being away from his home and farm several days a week.

"I don't have night call and I'm off on weekends and can attend gatherings, weddings, and the funerals that I used to only hear about while working the ER," he said.

Beamer is still perplexed by what he considered "the excessiveness of the charges that were filed against me," and the lack of support from the hospital board.

"It was all pretty disappointing and I don't know if I will ever fully understand the motivation behind the process," said Beamer.

While he realizes that he must be accountable for his actions, he said, "I was most relieved that fairness and justice is still alive in the medical system and that we can be judged on an individual basis."

"To have spent a career in a community and shared so many experiences together and to now have the strength of relationships prove to be such a powerful force has been a most unique and meaningful time for myself and family," he said. "There is such a thing as a silver lining."



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