HL spoke with ‘License To Kill’ host Dr. Terry Dubrow about hosting the show, why bad doctors can get away with doing harm, and more. Plus, we have an EXCLUSIVE video.
License To Kill returns for all-new episodes starting Aug. 8. The series investigates the cases of murderous doctors, nurses, and medical professionals who have put patients into jeopardy. License To Kill is hosted by renewed plastic surgeon and Botched star Dr. Terry Dubrow. He talked with HollywoodLife about why he signed on to the series.
“The reason I want to do this show is I’ve been a certified expert for the California Medical Board for over 20 years,” the plastic surgeon told HollywoodLife. “Over that period of time, I’ve seen so many cases where a doctor or medical provider uses their specialized skills to do harm. What never ceases to amaze me is how long a physician can get away with things before they’re discovered, and you think about why. First of all, when you’re a patient, you trust your doctor. So no matter what they say or do, you pretty much go, okay, they must be right. They’re a doctor. Secondly, we’re protected by that doctor-patient relationship, that cloak of secrecy, so we can get away with things for a long time. Then thirdly, if you think about it, when a doctor victimizes a patient, you’re not really sure there’s even a victim there because patients have diseases, they have problems, and you expect many times those diseases to have a natural process and evolution to get worse than some of the patients that come to them. So it’s even hard to determine whether there’s been a crime or a bad occurrence because of something a doctor did.”
Terry stressed that most doctors are very good ones who care for their patients. There are exceptions, though. Terry revealed what he hopes viewers take away from watching License To Kill.
“I’m hoping that — number one — they’ll still trust their physicians,” Terry continued. “Ninety-nine percent of medical providers, doctors, nurses, and everyone else are awesome, well-trained, and care very much about why they went into that field. But I want them to learn that these stories do happen. It’s always possible it can happen to you. There’s what I call trust and verify, which means it’s okay to trust the white coat. It’s okay to trust the degrees that are hanging on the wall. But verify. Check it. Most of these people in License To Kill when you talk to them afterwards, they say that, in retrospect, they kind of knew something was off, but they didn’t really trust their instincts or their gut because it’s a doctor after all. If something doesn’t seem right, it may in fact not be right. That’s when you need to start checking with the medical board, talking to the other doctors and nurses in the hospital, and really figure out whether this is something the doctor is doing wrong or it’s just a problem you’re having the doctors are trying to help you with.”
Doctors want patients to trust them. That’s how the doctor-patient relationship is a successful and productive one. “We want you to question, but we want you to trust and then let go of it,” Terry said. “Meaning if you’re too crazy paranoid about the care you’re going to get that’s not going to help you, it’s not going to help your disease, or whatever you want to accomplish. It certainly doesn’t help the doctor but always verify.”
The season 2 premiere focuses on Dr. Anthony Pignataro, a New York-based plastic surgeon who gained notoriety for inventing a “snap-on” hairpiece. In our EXCLUSIVE preview, former assistant DA of Erie County Chris Belling reveals that the fire department responded to a call from Pignataro’s office. A woman was receiving a breast augmentation and went into cardiac arrest. When the fire department arrived, Dr. Pignataro was attempting to create an airway for the patient using a coat hanger. License to Kill will premiere Aug. 8 at 7 p.m. on Oxygen. The following episodes will at 6 p.m. on Saturdays.