A group of top physicians penned a letter to a Columbia University dean this week demanding that TV celebrity Dr. Mehmet Oz be dismissed from his faculty position over what they called “quack treatments and cures.”
“He’s a quack and a fake and a charlatan,” said Dr. Henry Miller of Stanford, the first person to sign the one-page letter, the New York Daily News reported.
“I think I know the motivation at Columbia,” he continued. “They’re star-struck and like having on their faculty the best-known doctor in the country. But the fact is that his advice endangers patients, and this doesn’t seem to faze them. Whether they’re hoping Oprah will come and endow a center for homeopathic medicine, I don’t know.”
Dr. Gilbert Ross, executive director of the American Counsel on Science and Health, also signed the letter addressed to Dr. Lee Goldman, dean of faculties for Health Sciences and Medicine at Columbia, the Daily News reported.
“We find it a shame that he has fled from the ethical and responsible practice of medicine to exploit his television popularity,” he said, blasting Dr. Oz for the “various quack propositions that he is promulgating on his TV show — magical mystery cures.”
The doctors wrote that the Harvard-educated Dr. Oz, who joined the Columbia faculty in 1993, “has manifested an egregious lack of integrity by promoting quack treatments and cures in the interest of personal financial gain.”
Columbia on Thursday defended its decision to keep Dr. Oz on its team, the Daily News reported.
“Columbia is committed to the principle of academic freedom and to upholding faculty members’ freedom of expression for statements they make in public discussions,” Columbia University Medical Center spokesman Doug Levy said in a statement.
In June, Dr. Oz appeared before a U.S. Senate panel that accused him of endorsing “miracle” products that weren’t scientifically based. The TV doctor acknowledged at the time that some of the products he advised his viewers to use “don’t have the scientific muster to present as fact.”