The Scam of Matthew Scheidt and How it Affects You

Did you hear about the 17 year old teen that posed as a physician assistant at a Florida hospital for five days and got away with it? Are you surprised? I’m not.

It seems that Matthew Scheidt, had a summer job working part-time for a surgical supply company. He allegedly went to the Human Resources Department of the Osceola Regional Medical Center (ORMC) and convinced them that he was a Physician Assistant student at Nova Southeastern University and lost his identification badge. This is the hospital where many of my former patients were forced to go for medical care because they were either uninsured or received Medicaid. My former employer had a fiscal relationship with them. The use of the word “forced” is quite appropriate because my uninsured patients had no options. When those who had Medicaid requested to deliver at a women’s hospital in another county they were discouraged to do so by the powers that be. I recall with great pain the memos, reprimands and threats I received from my former employer because I wanted to give my patients the freedom of choice. Oh, the stories I could tell about the numerous altercations I had with certain staff members regarding patient management issues. So the fact that this hospital is now on local and national radar screen does not surprise me at all. The hospital was formerly owned by the organization that Florida’s incumbent governor once worked for and eventually paid fines because of fiscal improprieties. The hospital’s long-standing former administrator resigned once the governor ran for office. Yes, politics indeed can affect patient management. But let us return to the story of Scheidt.

Scheidt allegedly performed CPR, changed IVs, cleaned wounds, performed interviews and physical exams on male patients who were disrobed. He was also in the operating room. He only got caught when he asked permission to go to “restrictive areas” of the hospital and I pray it wasn’t the labor and delivery suite. How did this happen? Because our healthcare system is presently on automatic pilot. There are no checks and balances. No accountability. A 17 year old can show up in the human resources department of the hospital and no one does a background check to verify his credentials. Pity the poor patients. This is one of many reasons why The Smart Mother’s Guide to a Better Pregnancy (TSMG) was written. Patients need to be protected.

Could this happen to you? In a heartbeat if you’re not astute and aware. There is a chapter in TSMG, called Investigating the Places Where You Will Receive Care. I strongly encourage everyone to read it.

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8 thoughts on “The Scam of Matthew Scheidt and How it Affects You

  1. I was one of those patients who received horrible care at the ORMC with both of my pregnancies. I almost lost my second child during my second trimester, the physician at labor and delivery stated it was just false labor contractions and sent me home. The next morning I called Dr. Galloway where she ask to see me immediately at her office and requested I be taken to Women & Chidren’s Hospital in Orlando for urgent treatment. There I was diagnosed with Polyhydramnios, kept for two days then sent home to continue on bed rest while under the care of both Dr. Galloway & the High-Risk Clinic. Thanks to Dr. Galloway’s knowledge & concern for us, I managed to deliver my child full-term & healthy by c-section.

    • Wow!! Thank you very much for that kind testimony, Carmen. I’m so happy this happened because I’ve been complaining about the atrocities of ORMC for YEARS!!! I was threatened, reprimanded and raked over the coals. What’s done in the dark eventually comes to light. Matthew did the wrong thing, but the incompetence of the institution enabled him to succeed.

  2. I have to say I was in the E.R. on the 26th of August from around 8pm till 5am when my daughter was transfered to another facility… Matthew was there. We also thought he was quite young but I gotta say even though he was wrong in doing what he did he was the only “Dr” that came into our room several times to check on us and explain the next step and even came back in around 4am to ask if I wanted anything to drink knowing I had been there for hours. Like I said previously I know it was wrong but maybe the staff at this hospital could learn something from this 17 year old kid.I also agree with The Professor prison is not gonna help this kid….and as a parent of two teens didn’t his parent notice he wasn’t home all night???

  3. I think jail will do nothing for this kid. He was probably trying to play a prank or just figure out how far he could go. Apparently very far. Tammy’s testimony goes to show you that the human aspect of medicine is lost. Looks like this kid was able to make a family feel better and safer despite having no medical experience or credentials.

    Was it wrong? Yes and he was lucky he didn’t end up harming a patient or himself.

    What ca we learn from this?
    - Hospitals need better security measures and teens may have something to offer medical environments.

    Will Matthew be the new Patch Adams?
    Time will tell

    • The analogy to Patch Adams is a thought, Laura. This story would not be so tragic if he hadn’t done procedures (i.e., remove IV’s, etc.) The greater tragedy is the shabby, unprofessional manner in which the hospital handled his request. I know the hospital quite well and it appears that it has gone from bad to worse. I think I’m going to forward my blog post and the story to the Joint Commission of Hospital Accreditation. I’d be interested in hearing their comments. Thanks for yours.

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