Posted on Fri, Jul. 26, 2002
Pet owners filed a dozen complaints in two years against Lowcountry doctor
By JOE GUY COLLIER
A Lowcountry veterinarian, against whom a dozen complaints have been filed in the past two years, had his license suspended for a year on Thursday.
Dr. Stan Gorlitsky, a Mount Pleasant veterinarian, was incompetent and negligent in his care of animals, the state Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners said.
Marcia Rosenberg, a Mount Pleasant pet owner, said she was pleased. Rosenberg filed a complaint two years ago about Gorlitsky’s care of her cat, Pumpkin.
“I do look it at this as a success, but it’s not making me get off this case,” said Rosenberg, who wanted Gorlitsky’s veterinary license revoked.
Gorlitsky declined to comment. He did not wait around for the board’s decision.
After a year’s suspension, Gorlitsky can reapply for his license but will be on probation for two years, the board said.
The board reached its decision after a daylong hearing that was capped with more than two hours of closed-door deliberations.
The board heard the complaints of four pet owners.
In one case, the owner said Gorlitsky left a needle in a beagle named Huey. Another owner said Gorlitsky misdiagnosed mange on a puppy named Abby. The mange spread to the owner.
A golden retriever named Sparky died of water in her lungs and heart after visiting Gorlitsky’s office, one owner said.
Ben Sumrell said Sophie, a Jack Russell Terrier he owned, died at Gorlitsky’s office after being dropped off for a spaying.
People should know about the pet deaths and injuries at Gorlitsky’s office, Sumrell said. “They stop in and they’re not even aware of what’s been going on.”
Thursday’s hearing also put scrutiny on the veterinary board, which some say has not been vigilant in looking out for the public.
Dr. Dennis Feinberg, the board’s chairman, said he couldn’t discuss Gorlitsky’s case.
The Charleston veterinarian said the board “has always taken its charge very seriously ‘.‘.‘. to protect the publicthe health, safety and welfare of the public.”
Thursday’s decision was a step in the right direction, but the board has a long way to go, Rosenberg said.
She’s pushing for legislation that would open more of the board’s proceedings and records. Veterinarians with a pattern of problems need to be punished, she said.
“Anybody can make a mistake, but to make mistakes over and over again is not acceptable,” Rosenberg said. “These people need to be stopped.”
Reach Collier at (803) 771-8307 or HYPERLINK “mailto:email@example.com” firstname.lastname@example.org.