We recently became aware of a new business operation in the full practice authority state of Florida by the name of Dr. Pales Healthcare. One could be forgiven for assuming that based on the name, "Dr." Pales is a physician who attended medical school and earned an MD/DO degree, as is typically the case when the word "doctor" appears in the context of "healthcare". Especially if said "doctor" has a picture of herself wearing a white coat that reads "Dr. Pales" headlining the home page of her website, drpaleshealthcare.com, a website whose HTML
<title> tag reads "Dr. Pales Healthcare - Champions Gate Florida Physicians Group".
Of course, "Dr". Pales is no doctor, at least not in the conventional sense of doctor = physician. "Dr." Pales actually has a "Doctor of Nursing Practice" degree, or DNP, which she obtained from the
diploma mill highly respected online institution known as Purdue University Global.
"Dr." Pales has enthusiastically encouraged other midlevel nurse practitioners to "put all ur titles" and "show does [sic] titles!!!". Isn't it ironic, then, that the good doctor's white coat has a conspicuous lack of any credentials whatsoever? Other than the "Dr.", of course - because how else is everyone going to know that she's a real "doctor"?
The shenanigans don't end with "Doctor" Pales' website, though.
Before a few hawk-eyed members of the public complained (see below), Google categorized "Dr. Pales Healthcare" as a "Family practice physician". Apparently, enough people made a ruckus about this blatantly false advertising (since having a DNP/"Doctor of Nursing Practice" degree is a far cry from a real physician with a MD/DO degree) that Google changed the category to "Medical clinic". In our opinion, this is only a slight improvement given the fact that Google actually does have a specific "nurse practitioner" business category. Therefore, we invite our readers to peruse Google's "Suggest an Edit" feature to make this happen.
We've preserved a few of the aforementioned Google reviews/complaints for your reading pleasure below:
Just as, if not more entertaining than the complaints themselves (which make excellent points about the huge distinction in training between MD/DO physicians and nurse practitioners) is Dr. Pales' bipolar two-paragraph responses. For starters, we're not exactly sure how mentioning cold, hard, facts about the differences between physicians and nurse practitioners constitutes "lying" or causes "damage to an [sic] this clinic". We'd also love to hear more about "Dr." Pales' "investigation" of the IP addresses. What heinous crime is going to be "reported to the authorities", exactly? Even more interesting is Dr. Pales' steadfast denial that "DR. PALES WEBSITE WAS NEVER CHANGED OR WENT UNDER MAINTENANCE". Perhaps someone should inform the good doctor that using ALL CAPITAL LETTERS doesn't automatically make a statement true, especially when we have direct photographic evidence to the contrary:
Notable changes that were made to the website include the different stock imagery, the edit from "Primary Care Providers" to "Primary Care Provider" (after all, it's just her), a slight decrease in the repeated use of "Dr. Pales", and most importantly, the explicit statement that "Dr. Pales is a Nurse Practitioner" as opposed to "Dr. Pales is a Primary Care Provider". Previously, a
Ctrl + F on the homepage for the word "nurse" returned zero hits, and it wasn't obvious at all that "Dr." Pales was a nurse practitioner without reading the website's "About the Practice" page in detail. By the way, we should mention that she (finally) edited that page too and included her actual
alphabet soup credentials of "DNP ARNP FNP-C":
As "Dr." Pales notes in her bio, she holds the rank of Captain in the United States Air Force Reserve. Quite frankly, we find it unbecoming and offensive that a midlevel nurse practitioner masquerading as a "family practice physician" and actively gaslighting her online critics is somehow a member of the military, let alone one who is a commissioned officer.
May we remind Captain Pales that under the Uniform Code of Military Justice article 107, 10 U.S.C. § 907, the act of knowingly making a false statement is an offense punishable by court martial.
On a closing note, we leave you with the old adage that it's always important to read the fine print. As a patient, it's always important to double-check that you're seeing a real doctor (i.e. a physician) and not a midlevel nurse practitioner or physician assistant. In the case of "Dr." Pales' latest mail ads shown above (posted to Facebook about eight hours ago at the time of this writing), it's literally important to read the fine print.