By Kristina Pritchett
A Capistrano Beach doctor could lose his medical license after the Medical Board of California filed a complaint saying he was negligent and unreasonably excused a toddler from vaccines.
According to the board’s complaint, Dr. Robert “Bob” Sears was “grossly negligent in his care and treatment of a patient, a minor, who he saw in his office six different times between April 2014 and May 2015.”
The complaint claims Sears wrote a letter in 2014 excusing the patient from all future vaccinations, claiming the patient experienced organ failure and encephalitis after previous vaccines. However, the board’s complaint claims the letter was not maintained in the patient’s medical chart.
The complaint claims Sears “departed from the standard of care in that he did not obtain the basic information necessary for decision making, prior to determining to exclude the possibility of future vaccines.”
The board is requesting a hearing to decide whether or not to revoke or suspend Sear’s Physician’s and Surgeon’s Certificate; revoke his ability to supervise physician’s assistants, and pay requisite fees if he is placed on probation.
“We take the board’s accusation seriously,” said Rick Jaffe, Sears’ attorney. “But this case is very clear, this child had two unusual and severe vaccine reactions and his situation warranted concern about future vaccination. To continue vacation could have put the child at risk of further harm.”
Jaffe said they anticipate the case will further public education on the importance of recognizing severe vaccine reactions and providing informed consent for medical care.