Questions about ASC's accreditation arise following lawsuits, physician's felony charges

A physician lawyer is raising questions about a plastic surgery ASC that remains accredited after one of its surgeons was charged with involuntary manslaughter, ABC affiliate KGTV reported Aug. 8.

Christian Jagusch, MD, a physician and attorney, represents three parties who sued Carlos Chacon, MD, of Bonita, Calif.-based Divino Plastic Surgery Center. Dr. Jagusch told KGTV he feels the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care should revoke the ASC's accreditation amid three lawsuits and six felony counts.

The Medical Board of California restricted Dr. Chacon's license after he was charged with involuntary manslaughter after his patient, Megan Espinoza, died following a breast augmentation procedure at the ASC. Dr. Chacon and Heather Lang, RN, pleaded not guilty in December.

"I believe there's at least some ethical responsibility for a credentialing organization to say, 'Whoa. Maybe this isn't who we want to validate as [an example of] excellence in healthcare safety,' as they so claim," Dr. Jagusch told KGTV.

A letter from the AAAHC posted on the Medical Board of California's website says the ASC's accreditation was revoked in April but reversed a month later. The accreditation is subject to a discretionary survey.

The organization also told KGTV in a statement that "AAAHC accreditation decisions are made in accordance with the policies and procedures of the applicable accreditation handbook."

A preliminary hearing for Dr. Chacon and Ms. Lang is scheduled for Sept. 2.

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