Alternative Cancer Treatment Doctor Charged

Healthcare Training Resource
January 29, 2014 — 902 views  
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Robert Oldham Young, accused of being a fake doctor claiming to cure cancer, has pleaded not guilty to charges of medical practice without a license. The 61-year-old has also been accused of making financial profits while causing harm to cancer patients.

He is alleged to have offered intravenous therapies that cost anywhere between $50,000 and $120,000. Young’s counsel said the doctor was a legal practitioner and that his treatments were “naturopathic”.

Charges Against Young

If Young is convicted, he is likely to face a prison sentence of over 15 years; the assistants of Young have also been named in the complaint.

The 13-page complaint says all six terminally ill patients who were charged fees for treatments have died; however, Young’s attorney said the therapist’s patients were aware that he was not a medical doctor. Also, the attorney claimed that the patients voluntarily went to Young’s avocado ranch called ‘Rancho del Sol,’ where the treatments were given.

Young’s attorney also drew attention to the Health Freedom Act, which, he said has been designed “to shield practitioners of alternative medicine from criminal prosecution.”

This is not the first time that Young has run into trouble; back in 1995, he was arrested on charges of practicing without a license, and he had pleaded guilty. Also, he was charged again back in 2001, but eventually, that case was dropped.

What was his Treatment?

Young runs a facility at Valley Center, CA, called Ph Miracle Living, and claims on his website to have “aided the healing of thousands of people” with a “revolutionary alkaline diet and lifestyle”. He has also claimed to develop a form of therapy called “The New Biology” that can raise pH levels, causing alkalinity, which in effect, can cure cancer.

Alternative Medicine – Good or Bad?

This case brings into focus the issue of alternative therapies and their place in the health care system of the United States. It may be recalled that Vernon Johnson had shot into the limelight when he claimed to have cured prostate cancer by using an approach that caused a drastic increase in pH alkalinity that killed cancer cells. He had used a baking soda and molasses concoction for the same. 

Back to Young, the Deputy District Attorney Gina Darvas said outside the court that “alternative medicine, practiced properly in the state of California is legal...but there are certain things that only physicians can do, and that includes practices that puncture the skin or harmfully invade the body, or treatment in conditions or circumstances that are...dangerous. The defendant is charged because he engaged in practices under those conditions.”

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