What’s Up Doc?
By Dan Locke
Jan 1, 2012; Oakland, CA, USA; San Diego Chargers cornerback Antoine Cason (20) is attended to by medical staff after sustaining an injury against the Oakland Raiders during the second quarter at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Jason O. Watson-USA TODAY Sports
This season, among many other things, has been derailed due to several injuries to key players. Every team suffers through injuries, yet I cannot think of another team who has consistently throughout the year had players injured and unable to recover. Over the last couple of weeks the Chargers have put several players on season-ending IR. Recently Antwan Barnes was placed on IR due to a hamstring injury and became the 10th player to be placed on IR this season. The Chargers have had the most season-ending injuries in the NFL since the start of the season.
Injuries are something that every professional athlete must deal with, and some can cope better than others. And some are cyborgs (see Peterson, Adrian). However, the most common injury this season for some reason has been muscular, either the groin or hamstring. Eddie Royal, who was supposed to be the answer in our return game and slot WR, has been ineffective this year as he’s battled a hamstring injury all season.
Over the last several years it seems that injuries are plaguing the Chargers more and more. We have led the NFL in injuries 3 times since Dr. David Chao became the team doctor in 1998. Why does it appear that we can’t prevent some of these injuries and why is it taking so long to recover from them? In a time where teams have access to top of the line medical equipment and specifically trained medical personnel, why does it seem our players are suffering?
The answer is very clear: we don’t have any of that….oh yeah, and our team Doctor of 14 years has been sued 20 times since 1998. And has paid out millions of dollars in damages.
That’s right, our Team Doctor has been sued over allegations of malpractice, negligent care and straight fraud. He has not only been sued by his regular patients, but also by 4 former players who in the lawsuits claim that his negligence ended or shortened their careers. This is a sensitive subject for Chargers fans as it is speculated that Junior Seau suffered over 1,000 concussions during his career, yet was always on the field. His brain is currently being studied for damage done by said hits. I bring up Junior, because Dr. Chao was our team doctor during the last 4 years of Seau’s time with the Chargers.
In 2010 the DEA searched Dr. Chao’s office as it was investigating him for illegally writing over 100 prescriptions to himself since 2008. I don’t need to remind Chargers fans that also in 2010, then safety Kevin Ellison was arrested for having in his possession over 100 vicodin pills without a prescription. hmmmm…..
Currently, the California STate Medical Board is attempting to revoke or suspend his medical license due to what they are calling “gross negligence.” After you have read all of this, you should be infuriated that the players we spend millions of dollars to sign, spend our own money supporting and cheering on, are not getting the medical attention they need.
If all of the above isn’t enough, also know that Dr. Chao gets an annual salary from the Chargers, his own luxury box and 4 tickets, and sideline passes.
We want to Fire AJ and Fire Norv….its time we also Fire Chao.