U.S. Attorney spokesman: No apology forthcoming for Craig doctor

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Joel Miller

Drug Enforcement Administration agents were part of a search warrant executed Tuesday at Dr. Joel Miller's High Country Medical Office at 535 Yampa Ave.

Jeff Dorschner, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Colorado, confirmed Friday the DEA's participation in the search at Miller's office during which authorities seized an undisclosed number of patient records.

Dorschner could not comment on whether local law enforcement agencies participated in the search.

However, he had a rebuttal for one of Miller's comments.

On Thursday, the physician said authorities were remorseful during the search and that he expects an apology.

"No," Dorschner said when asked if the U.S. Attorney’s Office plans to apologize to Miller.

Miller did not confirm Thursday whether authorities took patient files from his office.

“Maybe they did and maybe they didn’t,” he said.

Dorschner said files from Miller's office are being held at the Moffat County Public Safety Center.

Local residents interested in learning if their medical records were among those confiscated from Miller’s office need to file a request through their health care provider pursuant to patient privacy regulations.

To obtain a copy of records, call the Public Safety Center at 826-2323, ext. 3372.

As of Friday afternoon, no formal charges have been filed against the local physician.

Authorities have not released additional details about the search, citing the case as an ongoing investigation.

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Comments

ajcnrmc2508 2 years, 7 months ago

This is one of the BIGGEST crocks of $h*t that has gone on in Craig!!! That "spokesmen" for the U.S. Attorneys office should be required to give Dr. Miller an apology, and his employes!!! Dr. Miller is one of the best if not the best doctor in Craig. If the actions of the DEA, CRAIG PD, & MCSD has affected your opinion of Dr. Miller than you DO NOT have the correct story!!!! Thank you, 1 very angry patient!!!!

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WrestlinRockies 2 years, 7 months ago

I have no insider information on this case...I like Joel, I am a patient..but I do have to say I have experience with Federal Investigations and Prosecutions in particular with Drug Offenses.

When you are "of interest" at this level.....

All I can say is, I am really sorry and will hope the best for you.

You are a really good guy and I appreciate the good you have done.

I can suggest a great defense attorney if you send me a message on here.

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lovingmom551234 2 years, 7 months ago

I love Dr. Miller. He is accepting and doesn't make any of my family feel unwelcome. My husband and I trust him with our children's medical needs. We are very greatfull for him and his staff. And in my opinion, this town loves to throw people under the bus any time they feel like it. I don't see the lodgic in trying to take away our best doctor in Craig! Are the other doctors mad at the competition or something? I have been to a few doctors here and they all treated me like a pay check instead of a person. High Country Medical is the only place that my whole family loves to go to. My kids never cry because they see where we are going. He has toys for the kids to play with and friendly staff. They are very understanding and have helped us out when we couldn't afford it. I don't care what anyone says about him or what happens (to him in this town), he is and always will be better than this place and those that don't like him don't deserve his presence.

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BlueMoon81625 2 years, 7 months ago

I find it interesting that the Craig Daily Press has hidden the original article with all the comments. This is a perfect example of how backwards and impartial the agencies, who are supposed to provide a public service to this town, truly are.

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esistate 2 years, 7 months ago

I am someone who's life has been affected by the evil that is joel miller.  i know that he seems to do a lot for some patients, but there are others that he treats like children or his experiments.  i am one of those. in 2008, miller prescribed me zanax, ativan, ambient, and a list of other drugs to treat my depression and anxiety.  i became addicted to several of the medications that miller so off handedly prescribed me.  i am not a recovered addict. i never had been addicted to any substance before.  miller made me an addict. now, i cannot live a single day without needing at least one of the medications that he's prescribed me and i'm afraid to tell my doctors that i am addicted for fear of them taking it away joel miller - you created me.  me the addict.  me the dependent.   i hope you lose your license

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sassywoo73 2 years, 7 months ago

I have to agree with WrestlinRockies. If there is sufficient evidence for Federal Investigators to be involved, retaining a capable defense attorney would be a good idea for Dr. Miller.

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KristyDavis 2 years, 7 months ago

@ esistate- OH PLEASE take responsibility for your own actions. You could have or still can quit taking them. You choose not to be honest with your new doctor. Blame yourself for not being honest with your new doctor, just like you probably were not with Dr.Miller but yet you still want to try to blame him. You are the prime example of the people who are dishonest to their doctor!!!!! I hope your new doctor figures out who you are so you can't trash talk them and blame them for your addiction later on. You are admittedly an addict and you can not blame anyone for that but you. Try being honest with yourself and your doctors!!!!!!

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lovingmom551234 2 years, 7 months ago

Well said @ Kristy Davis. I was just thinking the same thing myself. To blame a doctor for an addiction you have, is like blaming a bank for being robbed, simply because they keep money in it..... This world would be so different if people would take responsability for thier own actions. I will not be going to any of these doctors in Craig if we lose Dr. Miller. Please people, open your eyes and stop blaming a really good doctor.

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1xBitten2xShy 2 years, 7 months ago

Re: "I find it interesting that the Craig Daily Press has hidden the original article... This is a perfect example of how ... impartial the agencies ... truly are."

Let's assume--at the inherent risk of splitting "assume" into 3 unconventional syllables that may apply to both of us--that you meant "partial" and not "impartial". A quotation, a date of publication, the byline--something to point those of us who may not have read it toward the original article--would help.

For some of you other posters: 5 exclamation points, 5-6 "dots" in an "ellipsis", may indicate that you're operating under the influence of EQ rather than IQ (see other "1x...2x..." posts). I'd suggest you take a deep breath, take a walk, do the dishes, "sleep on it," etc. before posting. Poorly written (run-on sentences, comma-spliced sentences, etc.), poorly capitalized ("i" instead of "I", sentence beginnings not-capitalized), poorly punctuated ("!!!!!", "........", etc.) diatribes won't help you convince anyone of consequence--of anything of substance--except that you're a poor writer!

In general, gov' agencies usually don't apologize for anything until they get a lot of bad press. In this situation, at this point--2012-04-30 ("yyyy-mm-dd"), 13:11:00 approx'--the only one getting any bad press is Dr. Miller, and a lot of it is from the comments of his alleged, "loyal" [?] patients or his alleged employees.

Again, I'd suggest "y'all back off," let the "wheels of justice" (or "injustice" if you're too upset to see past your narrow, "personal" view) "grind on" for a while. See if he is indicted; see if any of his staff are indicted; see what the DOJ says about seizing his records; and see whether a grand jury is impanelled, etc. before pontificating that "He's the best. He's done [this or that] better than anyone else." Etc. Otherwise, you may look very foolish later. (Or, you may not.)

My guess (speculation, conjecture, hypothesis, etc.) is that this situation is going to get much messier before it eventually gets cleaned up. My guess (spec' ...) is that it won't get cleaned up fast enough to make everybody, especially Dr. Miller, his patients, and his employees happy, regardless of how it gets cleaned up.

1x...

PS We're all persons. Everything we do is, therefore, "personal", whether it be at home or work, "private" or "professional", etc. What we really mean when we say, "Don't take it personally" is "Don't get emotionally involved," or especially, "Don't get emotionally overwrought!"

PPS Dr. Miller's vociferous posters/supporters would do well to re-read the above PS.

PPPS Most of my [chuckle]-s are directed at myself (I won't explain because it'd take too long, too many posts, too many 3000 char' limits), some at those of you--please see 3rd paragraph from the top--who can't [deleted] restrain yourselves and your posts, some just because when I'm tired I tend to laugh. However, I don't find the general situation the least bit funny!

1x...

:)

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jasper123 2 years, 7 months ago

Does anyone realize that the agenda of modern western medicine is better living through chemistry we are all being trained to take a pill for any problem. To come down on any one doctor is wrong. any one can lie to any doctor and get what ever they want also only dr miller and the doj know the facts and to those highly intelligent bloggers please excuse my spelling and punctuation I believe it's more important to read what people say then to pick it apart to show your intellect

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1xBitten2xShy 2 years, 7 months ago

Taking your time to properly punctuate, capitalize, etc. enables anyone reading any post to do so as efficiently as possible. I agree, partially, with your first thoughts; they read better like this:

"Does anyone realize that the agenda of modern western medicine is better living through chemistry? We are all being trained to take a pill for any problem."

Writing poorly tends to make people read "poorly." You need (and want?) people to read well to get your message across. There is little excuse for anyone with average intelligence or better (barring dyslexia, reading/writing disorders, etc.) to write poorly, "blog" or not (these are just posts). That's not "showing off"; that's simply writing effectively.

Re: "To come down on any one doctor is wrong." That's like saying "to come down on" any potential law-breaker is wrong. That's anarchistic, similar to: "Do away with all laws because enforcing them will cause someone, somewhere, some inconvenience." Society has laws and enforces them. Laws and their enforcement take an anti-social mob and make it into a society; laws make us responsible to ourselves and to each other! :)

If society is in fact trained by "Better Living Through Chemistry" (a variation of DuPont's former company slogan and the title of a recent film) to take drugs, then not enforcing laws regulating prescription of potentially fatal drugs might be anti-social or foolish.

Furthermore, to take some posts above out of the very narrow [-minded?] context in which they were apparently used: if any potential or alleged drug addict simply can "just say 'no'" (Nancy Reagan, circa 1981), then any doctor can also "just say 'no, I won't prescribe excessive or improper medication for you.'" But, too many doctors--who sometimes suffer from untreated co-dependency and regularly suffer from alcoholism and other forms of drug-addiction--do over-prescribe. Thus, we have laws--and means of enforcing those laws--to cope with those situations where drugs are over-prescribed. Blaming over-prescribing on the pressure from the pharmaceutical industry is like blaming anyone's use of alcohol or prescription drugs on the fact that those drugs are available.

Please note that I'm not alleging Joel Miller over-prescribed or didn't; I simply don't know. I don't give undue credulity to those "Candy Man"-type defamatory statements above. Nor do I give excessive weight to the "He's the greatest doc ever!" statements. Again, I don't know. They are, until substantiated with evidence in a court of law, either libel or speculation; either way, they're just unsubstantiated opinion.

One of the reasons behind my alleged pedantry is to help educate posters like "Better Living" above, so that they can make better decisions and add better statements to this ongoing commentary. If that offends you, that's your problem. Take issue with it (problems and issues are not synonymous!) as you choose to do so. :)

Have a nice day.

Sincerely.

1x...

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KristyDavis 2 years, 7 months ago

@ 1xbitten2xshy Sounds to me like you have way to much time on your hands. Im pretty sure the whole point here is for everyone to express how they feel in the whole situation. I don't think anyone really cares for your proper writing lessions on here. No one is perfect and I think we all get a little excited while "blogging"

Oh wait I guess you are perfect.......................................................................................................................!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!**** Why don't you give all of us less intelligent bloggers your email address so you can edit our bloggs for for proper punctuation and capitalization before we post them haha............GET OVER YOURSELF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :):):):):):):)

PS 1x... If you read my (or anyones blogg on here) im sure you completely understand our "poor writing skills" as you say or you wouldn't be complaining about them!!!!

PPS 1x... Please edit this and rewrite this blogg for me!!!! Im positive im great at my job! Im pretty sure my (or anyone elses) "poor writing skills" on here make anyone any less intelligent than you..... It just means we have lives and not as much time on our hands to edit every little thing we write while blogging!!!!!!

Have a great day yourself!!!!!

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tlj2012 2 years, 7 months ago

1xbitten2xshy sounds like a pretty interesting person. You see, this is how people who spend most of their time writing up search warrants and finalizing discoveries sound like. People who are directly involved investigations that just can't stand to keep their mouth shut because while they talk about everyone else's run on run on run on sentences, and the point of not being "involved", to the point that they are involved. I once knew someone who sounded just like you. He spends his time alone because he is strangely awkward in social situations due to his inability to connect with others on a "human" level. By human I mean "normal". One day something will knock you from your pedestal. Your pedestal that has grown beyond imagination atop a mountain of capitalization and punctuation. 3000 characters and no way to climb down. Too bad you were busy revising the context in your head instead of taking in it's content.

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Cole White 2 years, 7 months ago

I have no opinion one way or the other on this situation, but as a matter of observation I noticed that everyone who is voicing an opinion in favor of Dr. Miller has just recently signed up for a CDP account and have only posted in favor of Dr. Miller. Makes me wonder if its isn't just one or two people who have created multiple accounts to post in favor of Dr. Miller.....Just saying!

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KristyDavis 2 years, 7 months ago

@highway1340- Im pretty sure Most everyone who has posted an opinion in Dr.Millers favor have put their real name some place or another! The letters in his favor in the CDP are signed with his patients names! So go figure... How do we know those of you not in his favor are not 1 or 2 people who have created multiple accounts???? His clinic is still full Monday through Friday with patients. That leads me to believe he has lots of people that know he is a great person and doctor. But ya know JUST SAYING!!!!!

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Cole White 2 years, 7 months ago

Kristy,

You are right.....you don't know. But what I see are those posting in his favor just opened up accounts in thelast few days and have only posted on his story, while the majority of those posting against him have posted, in many cases, for years on this website. Just seems odd. I'm not saying it is or isn't happening, I simply make a point that those who are voicing an opinion in favor of Dr. Miller have only been on this website a few days.

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tlj2012 2 years, 7 months ago

Hey highway1340. I have commented because...to be honest the CDP is a loser paper. So when I was told by someone about the situation i decided to read it. Let's face it they are the only reporting paper in the area so when they have an interest to me (once every 2 or 3 years) I guess I'll check it out. Dr Miller is a good man and Dr. And you highway1340 need to know that there is a world outside of Highway 13 and 40 and your little computer keyboard. Just saying!!!!

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Cole White 2 years, 7 months ago

tlj2012,

I'm not disputing that the Craig Daily Mess is a horrible paper and doesn't do a single ounce of investigative reporting. I am sure that if Dr. Miller bought more adds in the paper his story wouldn't even have been on a back page somewhere. If you go back and read any of the articles you would see though that the paper did the minimal amount of research necessary to make a story. The fact of the matter is that Dr. Miller's office did get raided and files did get confiscated. Right now Medicare is investigating fraud all across the country. They are getting leads on potential fraud by simply running a doctor's billing history through a computer to find discrepencies in how they practice (e.g. are they prescribing too many narcotics? are they seeing the same person for the same thing too often? is the person they are billing for dead?) or the DEA runs their prescribing habbits through a computer to see if they are prescribing too many drugs to the same people over and over again. IF the authorities had absolutely nothing to base their decision on they wouldn't have raided his office. Now if Dr. Miller has done his due dilligence then he should not fear an investigation as he apparently is not since he said he has nothing to hide and is continuing to practice as usual. I also know that a witch hunt can creat mountains out of mole hills and if you are looking for even the smallest errors you will find them. But the simple fact of the matter is that Doctors are defrauding the US goverment and providing substandard care all over America. We also know that a very small percentage of physicians account for the vast majority of the malpractice and fraud going on.

From a personal stand point I have met Dr. Miller. I think he's an ok guy. I have know beef with him. As we go futher into the future though more and more physicians will haver their practice habbits called into question. Those choosing to practice off the grid (no hospital privileges, no electronic medical record, no particiapation in medicare and insuranace etc. ) may likely have their practice habbits called into question more often.

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