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Lawton doctor disappears, later loses medical license

The Oklahoma Medical Board revoked Dr. Robert Miles Chisholm III's license Thursday after repeated attempts to contact Chisholm. Meanwhile, Chisholm's whereabouts remain unknown to the board.
by Jaclyn Cosgrove Published: July 26, 2013

When they arrived in Lawton, state investigators found a fully furnished doctor's office — but not a doctor.

It was like Dr. Robert Miles Chisholm III got up one day and left.

“It was like he just disappeared,” said Lyle Kelsey, the Oklahoma Medical Board executive director.

Thursday, the Oklahoma Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision voted to revoke Chisholm's license, citing unprofessional conduct.

Chisholm was not present at the disciplinary hearing, nor has anyone from the board heard from him since late November. His family and colleagues claim they haven't seen him either.

Meanwhile, more than 40 of his patients have made calls to the board, trying to figure out how they can get their medical records.

The Oklahoma Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision regularly meets in Oklahoma City to oversee disciplinary hearings of medical professionals.

The board frequently deals with cases in which doctors and other medical professionals have overprescribed narcotic drugs, are struggling with addictions to drugs, are facing allegations of fraud or have had inappropriate relationships with their patients.

Kelsey said abandonment cases are not common, and this case in particular is strange.

“Most doctors, if they're going to retire or quit practice and move, they'll make arrangements for their patients to get records and be treated if they're on any serious medications,” Kelsey said. “This was a situation where he just up and left.”

Board investigators began talking with Chisholm in November after one of his patients called the board's office. The patient told staff members that Chisholm's office was closed during normal business hours.

A board investigator emailed Chisholm, and he responded that same day.

“I am burned out from running a solo practice for 10 years,” he wrote in the email. A day later, he told the board he planned to drop off his patients' medical records with a local colleague for them to pick up. But a nurse at that doctor's office later told the board investigator that Chisholm never followed through.

Throughout November, Chisholm's patients continued to contact the board, concerned over their medical records. On Nov. 27, a board investigator told Chisholm about his patients' concerns.

Chisholm told the investigator via email that he apologized for any inconvenience. That apology was the last time the board heard from him.

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by Jaclyn Cosgrove
Medical and Health Reporter
Jaclyn Cosgrove writes about health, public policy and medicine in Oklahoma, among other topics. She is an Oklahoma State University graduate. Jaclyn grew up in the southeast region of the state and enjoys writing about rural Oklahoma. She is...
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