David Chao, the longtime Chargers head team physician who stepped down last week amid all sorts of lawsuits and allegations, cited "health problems" for his resignation. The reality is a little more more serious.
According to hospital records obtained by USA Today's Brent Schrotenboer, two major San Diego hospitals—Scripps Memorial and Scripps Mercy—conducted reviews of Chao's care, and his history with alcohol. A lawyer pursuing an ongoing malpractice case against Chao tells Schrotenboer that "Dr. Chao has [since] lost his surgical privileges with the only two hospitals he had surgical privileges with."
(Chao has a pair of DUIs on his record, and as we reported earlier this year, was out drinking at a nightclub when nurses at Scripps Memorial were desperately trying to get ahold of him while one of his patients was suffering a medical emergency. That patient lost a leg; Chao would claim he was visiting his mother, until nightclub receipts showed otherwise.)
Chao's attorney, while refusing to confirm that his surgical privileges have been revoked, also insisted that the hospital situation has nothing to do with Chao stepping down as Chargers doctor.
Meanwhile, we were sent this photo of a poster prominently displayed in Chao's San Diego office. It was taken yesterday, nearly a week after Chao and his clinic ended their association with the Chargers. It reads: "We are the team physicians for the San Diego Chargers and you!"