A Colorado man was forced to have three toes amputated after he sought treatment from a veterinarian who did not have a license to treat humans. 78-year-old veterinarian Francis Freemyer operates an animal practice in Greeley, Colo. and is facing a misdemeanor charge of "unauthorized practices".
Public relations officials at North Colorado Medical Center were unable to release further information on the conditions surrounding the man's treatment due to the fact that he is no longer a patient at the hospital, but a statement from the hospital via Reuters notes that the patient required the amputation surgery because of a 'lack of proper medical care'.
According to reports, the unidentified man described a foot infection he was dealing with to a neighbor, who gave him some leftover skin cancer ointment that Freemyer had previously used to treat the neighbor's dog. The man then consulted Freemyer, who simply added a wrap to the man's wound and ultimately accepted payment for his service. Hospital officials contacted police when the patient underwent surgery in June, which launched the investigation into Freemyer's practices.
Greeley Police Department Public Information Officer Susan West told Examiner today that the "unauthorized practices" charge is the only one facing Freemyer at this time, but an investigation into whether Freemyer treated other humans illegally is ongoing.
"As the investigation develops there may be additional charges, but that remains to be seen," West said in an email this afternoon.
This is not the first time in which Freemyer has faced disciplinary action. The vet was fined a combined $1,750 for two infractions involving signing off on an incorrect inspection report and failing to keep records of the treatment of a cat that fell below "generally accepted standards of veterinary practice".