ERWIN, Tenn. (WJHL) – A News Channel 11 investigation found patients accused a medical clinic in Erwin of withholding their medical records.
Patients at Bradshaw Family Medical, a health care provider in downtown Erwin, say it closed abruptly in July.
William Wilson was a patient for a few months at the clinic, and he says when he showed up for an appointment in July the doors were locked.
“We tried to contact the clinic. We were told it was closing unexpectedly. It got shocking after two weeks and there was no response, no communication,” William Wilson said.
He and his wife Phyllis say they feel helpless. They accuse the clinic of “radio silence” and withholding their medical records.
“They abandoned their patients,” Phyllis Wilson said. “People have to get their files back. They have to get their health care, and they can’t. We are held hostage by this clinic.
“Every time we called, we got voicemail,” William said. “Every time we passed by the office, it was locked.”
News Channel 11 verified these claims by calling the phone number listed online for the clinic. The line simply rings and notifies that the mailbox is full. On Wednesday, the clinic was closed when a news crew stopped by.
Patient Katherine Pierce was also knocking on the door of the clinic on Wednesday afternoon.
Although she declined to be interviewed on camera, she told News Channel 11 that she had been a patient of Bradshaw Family Medical for two years. Pierce has been trying to contact the clinic and get his medical records for over a month.
“I haven’t received any notification. None,” Pierce said. “It’s frustrating and depressing. This is medical care, and it is necessary.
Pierce said that although no one from the clinic alerted her to the closure, she was curious as to why her last prescription was filled for a three-month supply.
“They were at least trying to take care of me, I guess. Make sure I had my meds,” Pierce said.
She said that until the clinic closed, she was happy with the care they were providing.
“I had no problems as a patient. I thought it was a wonderful treatment, I had no problems at all. The staff was great. I just don’t understand what happened,” Pierce said.
“There was no response. None. Absolutely none,” William Wilson said of his repeated attempts to get in touch with anyone at the clinic since July.
Nothing is listed on the clinic’s website about a closure, and there is no sign on the door with an explanation.
“It’s been very frustrating,” said Phyllis Wilson.
Time is running out for patients who are in critical need of medication. William Wilson is diabetic.
“So I’m at a point where three or four of my prescriptions have run out and I can’t get them refilled,” he said.
“We keep hitting the same roadblock that without medical records, no one will see,” Phyllis added.
According to Tennessee law, a health care provider must provide a copy or summary of a patient’s medical record within 10 days of receiving a written request. If a supplier fails to comply, the law states that they are subject to disciplinary measures including penalties and a monetary fine.
The Wilson family said they want the state to step in and take action.
“We can’t believe this can happen. It shows absolute disregard for the well-being of patients, the dignity of the medical profession and the bonds that bind the community together,” William said.
Attempts by News Channel 11 to reach anyone with Bradshaw Family Medical by phone, email and in person on Wednesday for an explanation all went unanswered.
The Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) could not provide much information and did not confirm whether it was aware of Bradshaw Family Medical’s closure.
A spokesperson for TDH clarified that if disciplinary action were to be taken against the clinic, that information would be published in its disciplinary action reports, published on the 15th of each month.
“Complaints against health care providers are confidential in Tennessee unless and until a complaint leads to the filing of formal disciplinary charges by a board of health care professionals,” a carrier confirmed. word.
The months of July and August show no reports of disciplinary action against Bradshaw Family Medical.
“Any member of the public can lodge a complaint with the Ministry if they believe that a health professional has violated their law of practice or the rules of their profession,” added the TDH spokesperson.