Opinion: Canton-Potsdam Hospital owes public an explanation over doctor, former Potsdam resident says
Thursday, April 12, 2018 - 9:11 am

To the Editor:

As a former resident of Potsdam and St Lawrence County. I was shocked to read about the alleged theft of prescription drugs from patients by a cardiologist employed by the Canton-Potsdam Hospital.

More shocking was to read about the several past indiscretions for drug and alcohol abuse that cause having his medical license being revoked, not once but twice.. And these incidents were very serious.

While this case is still under review I won't dwell on it. However, I do have questions that the hospital urgently need to address. The public and patients have a right to know.

1. Did the Hospital conduct a through due diligence background check on Dr.Wessel prior to offering employment? If so, why was this Doctor with severe medical past performances, hired? Why was he deemed to be a great for Potsdam Hospital? If no check was carried out, why not??

2.Was it made clear to the Doctor that his actions would be constantly monitored? If so, were they?

3.Why has the Hospital not returned emails asking these questions? Why the lack of transparency? Do they not feel that the truth be known?

4. Will the hospital give an undertaking it will review its hiring practice ensuring only suitable and qualified medical staff are employed? Time will tell?

I know that the hospital employees have many talented and ethical staff that are beloved by the community. However, medical care is a team effort and a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. They deserve to work with the best of the best.

Patients deserve to be treated by doctors who's creed is "Do no Harm.” Unfortunately, harm was done. Let's ensure this hiring practice never takes place again.

And to those employed at the hospital that do such a wonderful job, healing and saving lives, thank you.

Paul Andrews

Formerly of Potsdam