State of Maine denies license to psychiatrist James C. Cooper for misconduct

January 5, 2011

On November 9, 2010, the Maine Board of Licensure in Medicine (“Board”) voted unanimously to deny psychiatrist James C. Cooper’s appeal of the Board’s preliminary denial of his application for permanent licensure.

According to the Board’s Decision and Order, Cooper committed unprofessional conduct while temporarily licensed as a locum tenens psychiatrist at Pen Bay Medical Center and its subsidiary, Mid-Coast Mental Health in Rockland, Maine from October 6, 2008 to April 3, 2009 (Cooper is also currently license in the states of Idaho, Indiana and Vermont).

Specifically, the document states that Cooper saw a 12-year-old patient who was referred to him in the absence of the boy’s regular psychiatrist and that Cooper carried on a consultation with the boy, despite the mother’s concerns that Cooper “did not appear to know why [the boy] had been referred to him or for what reason.”  The mother requested that the consultation be postponed until Cooper could confer with the boy’s referring health care providers but Cooper ignored the mother’s request.

The document further states that in the presence of the boy, Cooper advised the mother that her son needed to be hospitalized, despite having never reviewed the patient notes of the boy’s regular psychiatrist nor having contacted the boy’s therapist or primary care physician.  When the mother and son objected, Cooper threatened to report her to state social services agency, which he advised might respond by taking custody of her two children.  (Both the mother and Cooper filed reports with social services and the case was briefly investigated and closed without further action.)

Source: Decision and Order IN RE: James C. Cooper, M.D., Licensure Disciplinary Action, Complaint CR-09-003/CR 10-135, Maine State Board of Licensure in Medicine.


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