Send in the clowns … to defend Dr. Biter

With apologies to Stephen Sondheim:

“Isn’t it rich?
Isn’t it queer?
Losing my judgment this late in my career.”

That’s the sad song that many homebirth advocates could and should be singing, having made total fools of themselves over Dr. Robert Biter.

I’ve been writing about Dr. Biter since his hospital privileges were suspended in 2010.

The supporters of Dr. Robert Biter, the San Diego obstetrician whose privileges have been suspended by Scripps Encinitas can’t seem to figure out why this has happened. They ought to check the public records of the San Diego Superior Court website. Evidently Dr. Biter has been sued 6 times in the past 5 years! That must be some sort of record, especially when you consider that he has only been in practice since 2001.

Dr. Biter’s supporters included Ricki Lake, Rixa Freeze, Jill Arnold of the Unnecessarean, Barbara Herrera of Navelgazing Midwife, many other pregnancy bloggers and a Facebook group entitled “I love Dr. Biter.” They reflexively supported him without ever doing the most basic research that would have revealed the 6 pending lawsuits.

When the existence of the lawsuits was publicized, Ricki Lake backed away. It took a bit longer for Barbara Herrera to recognize that she had been conned. The rest didn’t care. The facts made no difference to most of his supporters.

And those supporters put their money where there mouth is. They gave money for Dr. Biter’s planned birth center, despite his own acknowledgement that the money was being funneled to his personal bank account, and despite the fact that there was no public record of any attempt to start a birth center. I guess if you are intent on making a fool of yourself, you might as well go all the way.

In the intervening years, Dr. Biter has been the subject of disciplinary hearings that revealed the details of multiple instances of medical malpractice and gross negligence (reports available at the Medical Board of California website). Still his supporters clung on and women continued to hire him to deliver their babies. Then in July of 2012, having already put his signature to a legal document requiring him to have another physician supervise him, he attended a homebirth by himself. The baby died and, as in the previous cases, the findings of the inquiry included malpractice and gross negligence.

Now Dr. Biter faces permanent suspension of his license. Although Dr. Biter has not contested any of the allegations against him and has actually acknowledged the truth of the accusations by signing documents admitting to them, he is still trying to con his supporters and they are still acting like clowns.

Katie McCall, the creator of the Sisters in Chains, the appalling Facebook page dedicated to homebirth midwives who are “persecuted” for no better reason than the fact that a few babies died here or there, recently offered Dr. Biter her support.

Just stopping by to give my love this new year. My it be an amazing improvement on the last for both of us.

Biter replies with his usual self-absoprtion:

… Truth can be slow at times, and it is amazing how people use our tragedies to their own self interests or self importance in the social media world…

Earth to Dr. Biter:

What’s tragic is the loss of innocent life and the injuries to the women who trusted you. The suspension of your license is best described by another word: justice.

The story of Dr. Biter is an object lesson in the way that homebirth advocacy works. Find a quack you like; do no research of any kind; ignore facts you don’t like; give money to con artists, let innocent people be injured and die. Rinse and repeat until the quack’s license is removed or she is arrested. Then pretend it is all a conspiracy.

“Don’t you love farce?
Dr. Biter’s fault I fear.
He thought that you’d want what he wants.
Sorry, my dear.
But where are the clowns?
Quick, send in the clowns.
Don’t bother, they’re here.”

20 Responses to “Send in the clowns … to defend Dr. Biter”

  1. Alexis
    September 27, 2014 at 3:44 am #

    Also, Biter’s twitter account represents him as a practicing doctor??? How misleading…

  2. Alexis
    September 26, 2014 at 5:21 am #

    There is a protest being held the day of the event:

    • Amazed
      September 26, 2014 at 8:17 am #

      Read Summer Hill’s posts in the thread. Claiming outright that his behavior was typical for your average OB/Gyn, so he really wasn’t that bad. Not that she’s defending him, of course! Only that she does and has been defending him on Barb’s page since the truth about Ace Lucacs came to light two years ago.

      What a fucking bitch.

  3. Alexis
    September 26, 2014 at 5:15 am #

    Here is the recent news coverage of the center and Biter’s status, I just can’t believe it. So, so dangerous.

  4. Concerned Mom
    September 21, 2014 at 6:54 pm #

    I’m so confused. I know he is opening a birthing center this month as an ill-informed friend is a strong supporter. How is this possible??

  5. marrlenn
    September 20, 2014 at 11:53 am #

    just so you know, since you have been foloowing since his 2010 incidents, he is actually opening the birth center next weekend…he has somehow managed to do so and it is completely incredible that he is still wanting to pick the pockets of these women even more. We are trying to help spread the word and stop him. He has somehow managed to get in contact with Oprah which makes it even more serious since he feels like what he is doing is practically approved by someone like Oprah. Here is his facebook page of his birth center. We need to stop this man and help spread the word.

    • Belle
      September 21, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

      A true wolf in sheep’s clothing.. Quote from his FB site..

      “Our unique approach to caring for persons who would otherwise have state funded insurance. We give free care to those in need and ask them to continue the ripples of effects by completing a service project for a local nonprofit. Rather than profiting from the poor, we are paying it forward and giving a hand up not a hand out…”

      Supposedly it’s licensed by the State of California, which is more than I can say for Biter. He names himself the “CEO and founder”.. I wonder if anyone has contacted the California Medical Board?


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