Based on new information presented to the Department of State by the Attorney General, Secretary of State Jeffrey Bullock and the President of the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline, Raymond L. Moore, Sr., have ordered the emergency suspension of Dr. Arturo Apolinario's medical license effective immediately.
The amended complaint filed by the Attorney General's office states that Dr. Apolinario is the medical director of Atlantic Medical Services in Wilmington (Atlantic Wilmington) and, as such, is responsible for the oversight of all medical, nursing and other health-related services provided to patients there.
"The Attorney General provides compelling reasons to suspend immediately the license of Dr. Apolinario to protect the public health," Secretary Bullock said. "This new complaint clearly demonstrates that there is a significant link between Dr. Apolinario and Dr. Kermit Gosnell. Dr. Apolinario failed to adequately perform his duties as medical director, permitting Dr. Gosnell to engage in illegal and unethical behavior under his supervision and, ultimately, putting patients at grave risk."
The complaint states that in a number of documented cases, patients who paid Atlantic Wilmington for illegal, late-term abortions and had been examined, tested and/or had their abortion procedures begun at Atlantic were transferred a day or days later to Kermit Gosnell's Philadelphia facility for completion of the procedures.
The complaint also says that as the medical director of Atlantic Wilmington, Apolinario allowed the transfer of Atlantic Wilmington patients to the Philadelphia facility when he knew or should have known in the reasonable exercise of his duties that Gosnell, his facility, and his staff posed a great danger to the health and safety of Atlantic Wilmington's patients due to deplorable conditions, substandard patient care, and improper administration of drugs.
In January, Gosnell and nine employees or former employees were charged in Pennsylvania for multiple crimes, including murder in the deaths of a patient and seven babies.
Apolinario was also the laboratory director at Atlantic Wilmington for a two-year period, during which time Gosnell removed and/or destroyed test reports for patients who had been tested at Atlantic Wilmington and transferred to his Philadelphia facility. The complaint states that Apolinario failed to take any reasonable steps to stop Gosnell from removing or destroying reports and willfully disregarded his legal duty to report Gosnell's unprofessional conduct.
"Physicians have a legal and ethical responsibility to report unprofessional conduct by other physicians," said Board President Moore. "In this situation, not only did Dr. Apolinario fail to report Dr. Gosnell's conduct but, as the medical and laboratory director of the Wilmington clinic, he allowed such activity to continue."
As a result of the action taken today, Dr. Apolinario will not be able to practice medicine, pending an evidentiary hearing. Earlier this week, Secretary Bullock suspended Dr. Apolinario's controlled substances registration.
Bullock and Board President Moore also suspended the medical license of Dr. Albert Dworkin, who was allegedly the obstetrician of record at the Gosnell's Philadelphia clinic.
With the issuance of the order, Dr. Apolinario will have his licensure status updated on the Division of Professional Regulation's online license verification service. This tool lists the status of 71,000 professional licensees in Delaware and can be accessed by visiting http://dpr.delaware.gov">dpr.delaware.gov and clicking "Verify License Online."
The mission of the Division of Professional Regulation is to ensure the protection of the public's health, safety and economic well-being through administrative and investigative services to Governor-appointed boards/commissions.