Doctor-I-Am: “Florida Lawmaker Takes Aim At Health Care Titles”

Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P.

I am Sam….. 

I am Doctor. I am Doctor. Doctor-I-Am.

That PhD-I-Am! That DNP-I-Am! That PhamD-I-Am! That DPT-I-Am! That PsyD-I-Am! That DSW-I-Am! That DBA-I-Am! That DMS-I-Am! That DMD-I-Am! That DPM-I-Am! That ND-I-Am. That DCS-I-Am!

I do not like that Doctor-I-Am!

Do you like green eggs and ham?

Do you like the medicine man (MD/DO)?

I do not like them, Doctor-I-Am. 

I do not like the medicine man (MD/DO). 

Ok, I know …………..  Get on with it. This article talks about a Florida lawmaker who wants to crack down on the titles that health care providers use when they identify themselves to the public:

Rep. (Dr) Ralph Massullo, a dermatologist from Lecanto,  has filed a bill for the 2020 legislative session that would change state law and allow health-care licensing boards to take disciplinary action against providers who are not physicians but use monikers that could imply they are, such as “anesthesiologist.”(2)

This bill follows a recent decision by the Florida Board of Nursing to allow certified registered nurse anesthetist John McDonough, EdD, CRNA, who is a professor and director of the nurse anesthesia program at Jacksonville-based University of North Florida to call himself as a nurse anesthesiologist (3). I wrote about this in a previous Authentic Medicine blog and drew the ire of many. Dr. Massullo’s bill “would amend health-care professional licensure laws to define anesthesiologists as allopathic or osteopathic physicians who have completed anesthesiology training programs.”

The bill (HB 309) referenced in the article in essence is a response to the recent Board of Nursing Decision (3). The bill basically clarifies roles and attempts to clear the rampant misrepresentation going on in healthcare today. Everybody seems to want to be Doctor-I-Am.  It is imperative that patients have confidence in and understand the credentials of their health care providers Dr. Massullo said.. This bill also would not allow non-physicians to identify themselves as physician, surgeon, medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, MD, cardiologist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, endocrinologist and many other ‘doctor’ monikers. Furthermore, it would ban non-physicians from using initials, letters, abbreviations or insignias indicating or implying that they are MD/DOs. I realize not everyone will agree with this bill, but I do. Have a great day. 


  1. “GREEN EGGS AND HAM” (by Doctor Seuss) 

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Robert Duprey MD

Robert is a 2nd career physician (MD); a combat Veteran with the US Army; a former psychiatric nurse practitioner; an independent researcher; a medical writer; and now having passed USMLE Steps 1, 2CK, 2CS, and 3, is a residency applicant. 

  3 comments for “Doctor-I-Am: “Florida Lawmaker Takes Aim At Health Care Titles”

  1. Steve O'
    October 28, 2019 at 10:59 am

    One sees this everywhere that one wants to use the language as fiat money – Newspeak, they call it.
    One country had 100% of the trillionaires in Africa! It was Zimbabwe. You could become a trillionaire, two! Have trillions in the bank! In 2009, this was the status of most of the population!
    Sadly, by the time the whole circus stopped, the Zimbabwean dollar had devalued by a factor of 1×10^25 A bit more than a trillion, sadly. Back then, a trillion trillionaires were worth a dime.
    You can call anyone Doctor. You can call anyone Supreme Court Justice, or Surgeon General, or Vice-Admiral. This doesn’t matter a damn. Just don’t ask the Justice to ask about law, or the Vice-Admiral to know about boats.

  2. Aaron M Levine
    October 23, 2019 at 6:18 pm

    Two things. First, I was once told Canadians MDs were considered anesthetists.
    The attorney General in Texas about 25 years ago determined that chiropractors were physicians and could be addressed and labeled as such.

  3. Matthew William Wood
    October 22, 2019 at 7:27 pm

    simple problem–not stolen valor but purloined accreditation—titles serve a purpose and must have validity—every patient must ask their “provider” at the outset: “Did you graduate from medical school?”

Comments are closed.