Sunday, February 27, 2011

Open Letter to the Nova Scotia MS Clinic

Feb 27, 11

Dr. Verandar Bahn
Dept. Head NS MS Clinic

Dear Dr. Bahn,

I would like to bring to your attention that my life has been threatened by one of your clinic's doctors.

If at anytime you think the content of this letter is insulting or condescending, please rest assured that this is a pale comparison to how I was treated at your clinic on Thurs. Feb, 24 by neurologist Dr. Richard Leckey.

I never asked for this appointment, my requests for an appointment with you were ignored last fall when I was dieing. Therefore, the bill for my consulting services and travel expenses to attend this meeting will be sent by postal mail.

Dr. Leckey was insulting and condescending, but what concerns me more is his statement of not knowing what stenosis is. His credentials are now questionable as stenosis is covered extensively in your first years of medical school. Dr. Bahn, I learned stenosis in my military first aid training. Or possibly Dr. Leckey was acting that way he was to impress the uninvited guest to that meeting, that I can only assume to be a pharmaceutical representative. Regardless, it was unacceptable. If Dr. Leckey does in fact know what stenosis is, then he blatantly lied to me. This is also not the first time I have been lied to by a neurologist from your clinic.

I have also had the displeasure of meeting neurologist Dr. Alex MacDougall who told me that, “it would be impossible for me to have MS as the disease does not cause pain and only affects females”.

Your clinic doctors are obviously not qualified to be practising medicine in this country. And you Dr. Bahn, are guilty of misconduct yourself by purposely modifying medical documents on a patient that wanted to travel for the CCSVI procedure. You did a very good job of assessing her as being much healthier than she actually was. Unfortunately, those records do not coincide with your previous observations. So that patient and her husband are anxiously awaiting her next appointment with you.

It is all fine and good for you and your doctors to make your own rules, besides being treated the way I was, I have been denied aftercare by Dr. Richard Leckey because I left the country to save my life. This is a direct contradiction to what was said to us as patients by our Health Minister and is a direct threat against my life. As much as it pains you, you do not have all the facts and we know it as well as you. Your agenda now is to try to rake in as much money as you can off the backs of the sick and suffering people in this province while you still have time. Congratulations on being awarded two new clinical trials that should help with that.

Unfortunately, I am the person that exposed what the Novartis Gilyena sales reps were saying to and about MS patients. You can read it on my blog here as well as this letter and plenty of other tidbits proving that you do NOT have the MS patients' best interests at heart.

This new wonder drug that you are now going to push on the people of this province is responsible for the deaths of two people in their clinical trials. At a yearly cost of $50,000 per patient, and almost 3000 people suffering with MS in this province, you stand to lose a lot of money if the CCSVI treatment is allowed to be performed.

What this has boiled down to is a difference in Religious beliefs. You and your neurologist friends think you are God. Even other doctors bow down to your arrogance while secretly laughing behind your backs. Dr. Bahn, you are no god. You are nothing more than a man profiting off the sick and dieing while standing behind a glass wall.

As a person living with a fatal form of MS, I will not be treated the way I was treated by your doctor. I have bowed down, begged, and pleaded for help from the Health Minister and people like you Dr. Bahn. I have received nothing. That ends now.

Last November while at death's door, I, with the help of many friends, snuck out of this country to get a procedure that you condemn in an attempt to save my life. This was a calculated risk that paid off. I am still alive and getting stronger everyday. The Health Minister sent me a confirmation letter of her denying my compassionate request, with that, she gets the $12,000 bill for my procedure. Her refusal to even acknowledge my request will be her political suicide. You, on the other hand, may be facing criminal charges.

You and your doctors think the people in this province are uninformed. Rest assured you couldn't be more wrong. I would expect your doctors to start having more visits similar to what happened Thurs. The MS patients worldwide are banding together to teach others of the lies and destructive actions you and your colleagues are pulling.

Seventy years ago, the Neurological Societies convinced some obviously ill informed people that MS was an auto immune disease. You have had 70 years to prove that, and all you have proven is that you give us drugs that kill us and at best case are no more than 30% effective for less than 10% of the people using them for our progression. Even that is subjective. The poisons you were feeding us weren't killing us fast enough, so you moved patients that didn't know better into trying chemotherapy treatments. Everyone of those patients is doing worse and will die. Chemotherapy actually kills more people than cancer, but is a great source of revenue for you. The offer made to me was for “high” doses.

We as patients have tried the diplomatic approach with you and the Health Minister. We have asked for meetings, we have shown proof, yet you continue to ignore and insult us. As well as insult other doctors for having the decency to help us. We will not stand to have our lives threatened and jeopardized for your personal greed. You should consider the hundreds of patients that have left or are leaving for treatment as the rock that is going to break your glass wall.

If Dr. Gerald Mckean and the other vascular surgeons and interventional radiologists in this province that are qualified to perform the procedure continue their cowardly actions of not standing up for us as patients because of fearing a bunch of misleading neurologists, they will be dealt with accordingly. Thanks to the actions of you, your doctors and the Honorable Maureen MacDonald, the time of diplomacy has ended and if you won't help us, it is time for you to step down.

Dr. Bahn, all we as patients have ever asked is to be heard. The Hippocratic Oath states that a doctor is to do no harm. Dr. Bahn, ignoring us will kill us. Those of us that have had the treatment have for the most part, regained some quality of life and dignity. More and more are getting better everyday. Some of us like me, are now able to live a bit longer with our families. But we still have MS and we still need help.

We need proper follow up care such as venous ultrasounds to ensure proper blood flow is being maintained and monitoring for blood clots. This is already done in this country for patients that have had the same procedure for non-MS related issues. When we complain, we do not need a drug. We need you to listen to us as it is the drugs that we are complaining about. We know CCSVI is not the answer, but the benefits have more than proven it to the patients that you should be following and tracking those of us that have had it done. Above all, we need you to start treating us with at least the respect we deserve as humans trying to stay alive.

Marcel Gignac


  1. Well said Marcel. The day for history to be recorded is now and the power of the people will prevail.

    It is not just ms patients...or Neuros... As I go to various mds I ask them about the influence of Pharma on medicine and all the mds I talk to AGREE with me and the former editor in chief of the NE Journal of medicine.

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