Never let it be said that Rand Paul doesn’t practice the libertarianism he preaches.
It is well known that the libertarian gods help those who help themselves. In that spirit of self-help, Rand Paul is a “board-certified” ophthalmologist because he created his own “board” to “certify” himself:
U.S. Senate candidate Rand Paul says he is a “board-certified” ophthalmologist — even though the national clearinghouse for such certifications says he hasn’t been for the past five years.
Rand Paul, who practices in Bowling Green, says he is certified by the National Board of Ophthalmology, a group that he incorporated in 1999 and that he heads.
But that entity is not recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties, which works with the American Medical Association to approve such specialty boards.
Lori Boukas, a spokeswoman for the American Board of Medical Specialties, said her organization considers certifications to be valid only if they are done by the 24 groups that have its approval and that of the AMA.
“He is not board-certified,” she said of Paul.
The specialties board recognizes the American Board of Ophthalmology, the nation’s main ophthalmological certification group. Paul had certification from that organization before he let it lapse after he started his National Board of Ophthalmology.
The American Board of Medical Specialties said board certification is important because it enables “patients to determine whether their physicians were appropriately trained and knowledgeable in their specialties.”
The Courier-Journal began seeking comment from Paul Tuesday. When the newspaper tried to interview him at two Louisville events Saturday, he wouldn’t comment.
“I’m not going to go through all that right now,” Paul said while at the Great Eastern National Gun Day Show and JAG Military Show, in Louisville.
Asked when he would talk, Paul said: “Uh, you know, never. … What does this have to do with our election?”
Jesse Benton, his campaign manager, said later Saturday that Paul would only answer questions submitted in writing.
It actually gets a little worse:
Along with his wife and father-in-law, Paul founded the National Board of Ophthalmology because the American Board began requiring physicians certified after 1992 to be recertified every 10 years to make sure they were keeping up with medical trends.
Asked what requirements the National Board of Ophthalmology has for recertifying doctors, Paul’s wife, Kelley, who is listed on forms as the group’s vice president, said: “I’m not involved in that. I’m not officially talking about that today.’”
After incorporating the board in 1999, Paul allowed it to be dissolved in 2000, when he didn’t file required paperwork with the Kentucky secretary of state’s office.
But he revived it in September 2005, just three months before his certification from the American Board of Ophthalmology was scheduled to lapse.
The National Board of Ophthalmology doesn’t maintain a website; its standards for certifying doctors and charges for certification couldn’t be determined.
…the address for Paul’s group is a UPS Store in Bowling Green.
An Internet search found only seven ophthalmologists other than Paul who say they are members of or are certified by Paul’s group. All say they also are certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology; none returned phone calls to their offices.
Let it be noted that, according to a statement issued by The Paul, ” The National Board of Ophthalmology is a non-profit group (that) was formed in 1987 by over 200 young ophthalmologists”. And only seven ophthalmologists other than Paul can be found who say they are members of the group, let alone being certified by it. I guess it must be some kind of secret society?