Dr. Carol Roberts, a once-prominent advocate of alternative medicine, was reprimanded and fined $15,000 today by the Florida Board of Medicine at a meeting in Boca Raton. She had been charged with two counts of negligence in a 2009 outbreak of hepatitis C among her patients.
As many as 11 cases of the serious and incurable illness developed after a nurse at Roberts’ Tampa-area clinic reused syringes and medicine vials. The nurse, Brandy Medeiros, is now serving a five-year probation ordered by the Board of Nursing.
Roberts was charged in only two of the cases. The Department of Health said no other patients filed complaints.
Donald Mullins, a consumer member of the board, said he didn’t see it as fair to blame a doctor for what a nurse does. But all other board members disagreed.
Dr. Zach Zachariah said that as “captain of the ship,” Roberts had to take responsibility for what happened. Dr. Fred Bearison agreed: “The doctor does have responsibility to make sure policies and procedures are followed."