23 June 2015

US military contractor accused of bizarre medical procedures

US military contractor accused of bizarre medical procedures; medical license at risk

A U.S. government contractor who trains the military in combat medicine could have his medical license revoked after he was accused of conducting a series of bizarre and invasive procedures involving students, including several of a sexual nature and others involving drugs and alcohol.

Dr. John H. Hagmann appeared before the Virginia Board of Medicine on Friday. The board temporarily suspended Hagmann's license in March, saying a substantial danger to the public health or safety warranted the decision.

The allegations against him, first reported by Reuters, are largely based on interviews investigators had with former students.

A statement outlining the board's case says Hagmann:

- photographed and manipulated a drunk student's genitals

- told students to quickly consume alcohol and then injected them with a hallucinogen to test its effects on their cognitive skills

- encouraged students to practice inserting catheters into each other without proper training or need.

Hagmann's attorney, Ramon Rodriguez, said his client would not be attending the hearing while Hagmann told Reuters via email that he didn't violate any rules and nobody was harmed.

"There were no 'patients' and no 'physician-patient relationships' involved — only students undergoing training," Hagmann said. "In 25 years no one has ever been harmed."

The company DMI says it has trained physicians, combat medics, soldiers, law enforcement and bodyguards for more than 15 years. A company brochure posted online claims DMI is the single largest trainer of U.S. military forces in operational medicine. Hagmann is a retired Army doctor.

State investigators said Hagmann told students to drink large amounts of liquor and beer. He then injected them with ketamine, a hallucinogen, so he could assess the effects of the substances on their cognition.

The report also says Hagmann conducted "shock labs," which consisted of withdrawing blood from medical students, monitoring them for severe blood and fluid loss that can make the heart unable to pump enough blood to the body and can cause organs to stop working, and then auto-transfusing their blood back to them.

In 2013, the report says, Hagmann and a student were drinking beer when he asked the student questions about his uncircumcised penis, masturbation and sex. He also asked to photograph the student's penis, and the student said he was drunk and didn't feel he could refuse, the report said. Hagmann purportedly wanted to use the photos as a "training tool."

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