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As Dr. Javaid Perwaiz faces trial, the women he treated question decades of care

CHESAPEAKE, Va. — The last time Brittni DuPuy-German saw her trusted gynecologist, she once again explained that the stabbing, mystery pain in her abdomen had not gone away.

It first appeared two years earlier, after she said her doctor, Javaid Perwaiz, surgically tied her tubes. To fix it, he had proposed more surgery — three additional procedures in nine months that she said included a hysterectomy when she was 29. But the pain persisted.

So on Nov. 8, 2019, at his private-practice office, Perwaiz and DuPuy-German discussed the possibility of yet another surgery, she said. He scheduled an ultrasound for just days later, a sign of the efficiency that DuPuy-German had come to expect from her family’s longtime gynecologist. He was her mother’s doctor, her sister-in-law’s doctor, her best friend’s doctor. Perwaiz had delivered DuPuy-German and delivered her children.

Which is why, when her phone buzzed the day after her appointment, she was shocked by the headline she was reading: “Chesapeake doctor tied women’s tubes, performed hysterectomies without their consent, feds say.”

She absorbed the details of the FBI investigation. Her doctor, the news report said, was accused of lying to patients and persuading them to have life-altering surgeries they didn’t need. DuPuy-German began doubting everything Perwaiz had told her about her own body.

“That’s when all of the things that I didn’t question before started popping up,” she said.

As Perwaiz faces trial this week, a year after his arrest, DuPuy-German has received few answers to those questions — even as the FBI’s investigation expanded and the list of alleged victims grew. There are 29 patients specified in court documents and hundreds of others who contacted authorities after the doctor’s arrest.

DuPuy-German, now 32, is not cited in the criminal case but has filed a lawsuit against Perwaiz.

The U.S. attorney’s office for the Eastern District of Virginia would not say how many women in total were allegedly mistreated by Perwaiz, but in a recent trial memorandum prosecutors wrote that “the identified patients are only ‘examples’ of the scheme to defraud.”

The case, which authorities said was launched in 2018 after a hospital employee’s tip, first hinged on one charge each of health-care fraud and false statements. Federal prosecutors now allege that Perwaiz executed an “extensive scheme” spanning nearly a decade that endangered women’s pregnancies, robbed their ability to conceive and pressured them into unnecessary procedures based on unfounded cancer diagnoses and exams using broken equipment.

The more procedures Perwaiz performed, authorities said, the more money he made off insurance companies. He used the profits, according to prosecutors’ trial memorandum, “to support his lavish lifestyle.”

Perwaiz, who is jailed without bond, pleaded not guilty. He has not spoken publicly about the allegations but defense attorneys said in a court document he is “prepared to defend himself at trial.” His lawyers in the criminal case have not responded to multiple requests for comment, but have argued unsuccessfully in numerous motions to dismiss that, among other things, some charges were duplicative.

When will things go back to normal? Experts say that’s the wrong question amid COVID-19

The coronavirus pandemic has changed the world and left countless people longing for a pre-pandemic way of life.



a man riding on the back of a bicycle:  Abdul Djiguiba, of Milwaukee, wears a mask as he gets gas at a fueling station on the corner of Green Tree Road and North 76th Street in Milwaukee on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. Gov. Tony Evers issued a new public health emergency on Tuesday to extend the statewide mask mandate until late November as cases of coronavirus accelerate around the state. - Mike De Sisti / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel


© Mike De Sisti / Milwaukee Journa
 Abdul Djiguiba, of Milwaukee, wears a mask as he gets gas at a fueling station on the corner of Green Tree Road and North 76th Street in Milwaukee on Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. Gov. Tony Evers issued a new public health emergency on Tuesday to extend the statewide mask mandate until late November as cases of coronavirus accelerate around the state. – Mike De Sisti / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

That desire is likely only further straining our mental health.

“Our brains really are very eager to get back to normal, to get back to January 2020,” Dr. Gleb Tsipursky, CEO of Disaster Avoidance Experts and author of a book about adapting to “the new abnormal” of COVID-19, told USA TODAY.

Start the day smarter. Get all the news you need in your inbox each morning.

But that’s simply not possible, Tsipursky said. Some losses in recent months are permanent. The dark cloud of coronavirus risk, meanwhile, will continue to linger – possibly for years. 

“Normality” means different things for different people. Tragically, for hundreds of thousands of Americans, a pre-pandemic life would include a loved one who has died of COVID-19 this year. 

For some Americans, a return to normal would mean restored health and financial stability. To others, it’s a world with concerts and gatherings, hugs and handshakes. 

There’s nothing wrong with hoping for a better, more stable future, New York University psychology professor Gabriele Oettingen told USA TODAY. But it’s important to realize that is likely a long-term fantasy, she said. 

Hope isn’t a luxury: It’s essential for mental health.

Is 6 feet really a safe distance?  There are still many questions about COVID-19. We asked experts for the answers.

A lingering threat

The fight against this highly contagious virus continues to define daily life: Cases are rising; the president was diagnosed with COVID-19; Disneyland is still closed and the death toll is comparable to some of our most tragic wars.

That won’t always be the case. Tsipursky described a scenario in which increasingly effective vaccines and treatments will slowly reduce the spread of the virus over the course of years – a gradual process, rather than a quick return to what life was like in January 2020.

Dr. Anthony Fauci has hinted at a similar future, warning that approval of a vaccine would not be an “overnight event” that quickly returns the nation to a normal way of life. Even “getting back to a degree of normality which resembles where we were prior to COVID” might not arrive until late 2021, he said in early September.

As long as the virus continues to spread, previously normal activities such as going to a bar, attending a crowded concert, or even hosting a family gathering over the holidays will continue to come with significant risks. And those risks aren’t only

The Hill’s Campaign Report: Trump campaigns on Rush Limbaugh show l Democrats question Trump’s mental fitness l Coronavirus stimulus in doubt before election

Welcome to The Hill’s Campaign Report, your daily rundown on all the latest news in the 2020 presidential, Senate and House races. Did someone forward this to you? Click here to subscribe.

We’re Julia Manchester, Max Greenwood and Jonathan Easley. Here’s what we’re watching today on the campaign trail:

LEADING THE DAY:

Happy Friday! From talk of invoking the 25th Amendment to President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden campaign raises over M on day of VP debate Trump chastises Whitmer for calling him ‘complicit’ in extremism associated with kidnapping scheme Trump says he hopes to hold rally Saturday despite recent COVID-19 diagnosis MORE’s two-hour call into the Rush Limbaugh show, it’s been another chaotic day in Washington to say the least.

Let’s get you up to speed.

The day kicked off with Democrats rolling out legislation that would establish a panel to examine a sitting president’s ability to perform their duties, and potentially to remove the commander in chief from office if they are found to be debilitated.

The legislation would invoke the 25th Amendment, which empowers Congress to create “a body” which, working with the vice president, can remove a president deemed “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”

To be clear, any panel created by the legislation would apply to future administrations, but it’s a hit at Trump, who is facing questions from Democrats over his mental acuity in the wake of his coronavirus treatments. Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiOn The Money: Trump says talks on COVID-19 aid are now ‘working out’ | Pelosi shoots down piecemeal approach | Democrats raise questions about Trump tax audits Trump retweets reporter saying 25th Amendment is not equivalent to a ‘coup’ Trump responds to Pelosi bringing up 25th Amendment: ‘Crazy Nancy is the one who should be under observation’ MORE (D-Calif.), who unveiled the legislation, has openly questioned whether Trump’s COVID-19 treatments have impacted his decisionmaking skills.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellOvernight Health Care: Regeneron asks for emergency authorization of coronavirus treatment Trump received | McConnell says he hasn’t visited White House in two months due to coronavirus | Employer-sponsored health insurance premiums rise 4 percent McConnell says he hasn’t visited White House in two months due to coronavirus Human Rights Campaign unveils its congressional scorecard ahead of election MORE (R-Ky.) blasted the legislation as “absolutely absurd.” The bill has no chance of being enacted this session, with Congress on recess and the Senate and White House currently controlled by Republicans.

Meanwhile, sources told The Hill that Trump and his aides offered Pelosi a $1.8 trillion coronavirus relief package. The latest figure is a jump from their last offer of $1.6 trillion. However, we don’t know yet if Pelosi will be willing to move down from her demand for a $2.2 trillion package.

Trump made news on the issue while he was on Limbaugh’s show this afternoon, saying he wanted a larger package than either Democrats or Republicans have offered. The comments

Trump campaigns on Rush Limbaugh show l Democrats question Trump’s mental fitness l Coronavirus stimulus in doubt before election

Welcome to The Hill’s Campaign Report, your daily rundown on all the latest news in the 2020 presidential, Senate and House races. Did someone forward this to you? Click here to subscribe.



a man wearing a suit and tie: The Hill's Campaign Report: Trump campaigns on Rush Limbaugh show l Democrats question Trump's mental fitness l Coronavirus stimulus in doubt before election


© Getty Images
The Hill’s Campaign Report: Trump campaigns on Rush Limbaugh show l Democrats question Trump’s mental fitness l Coronavirus stimulus in doubt before election

We’re Julia Manchester, Max Greenwood and Jonathan Easley. Here’s what we’re watching today on the campaign trail:

LEADING THE DAY:

Happy Friday! From talk of invoking the 25th Amendment to President Trump’s two-hour call into the Rush Limbaugh show, it’s been another chaotic day in Washington to say the least.

Let’s get you up to speed.

The day kicked off with Democrats rolling out legislation that would establish a panel to examine a sitting president’s ability to perform their duties, and potentially to remove the commander in chief from office if they are found to be debilitated.

The legislation would invoke the 25th Amendment, which empowers Congress to create “a body” which, working with the vice president, can remove a president deemed “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office.”

To be clear, any panel created by the legislation would apply to future administrations, but it’s a hit at Trump, who is facing questions from Democrats over his mental acuity in the wake of his coronavirus treatments. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who unveiled the legislation, has openly questioned whether Trump’s COVID-19 treatments have impacted his decisionmaking skills.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blasted the legislation as “absolutely absurd.” The bill has no chance of being enacted this session, with Congress on recess and the Senate and White House currently controlled by Republicans.

Meanwhile, sources told The Hill that Trump and his aides offered Pelosi a $1.8 trillion coronavirus relief package. The latest figure is a jump from their last offer of $1.6 trillion. However, we don’t know yet if Pelosi will be willing to move down from her demand for a $2.2 trillion package.

Trump made news on the issue while he was on Limbaugh’s show this afternoon, saying he wanted a larger package than either Democrats or Republicans have offered. The comments are a break with what his own White House is currently offering leaders on Capitol Hill.

McConnell said he does not expect the White House and Congress to reach a deal on a coronavirus spending package prior to Election Day.

And speaking of Trump’s call into Limbaugh’s show … the president spent a whopping two hours on the conservative talk radio program, in what the president’s reelection campaign dubbed the “largest radio rally in history.”

Trump spent the call lashing out as his usual targets, including the news media, Black Lives Matter and Democrats.

“To be with you two hours, you have no idea. It’s a great honor,” Trump told Limbaugh.

READ MORE:

Democrats unveil bill creating panel to gauge president’s ‘capacity,’ by Mike Lillis

Trump and allies try to reframe 25th Amendment

Trump Suffering From ‘Severe’ Case of Coronavirus? Doctors Question Use Of Dexamethasone

KEY POINTS

  • Experts say Trump’s COVID-19 case may be more severe than his doctors are releasing
  • The president’s medical team announced they had given him a dose of dexamethasone
  • The steroid is used to treat patients who are on ventilators or need extra oxygen 

Experts questioned President Donald Trump’s health and the severity of his COVID-19 infection after the president’s doctors said he has started on dexamethasone — a generic steroid used to reduce inflammation caused by other diseases. 

Trump’s medical team announced Sunday that the president had received his first dose of the steroid after experiencing low oxygen levels. Doctors at Walter Reed National Medical Center held a press conference Sunday morning, where they confirmed Trump received supplemental oxygen Friday and Saturday after intially denying it.

The medical team also detailed Trump’s treatment plan, which including taking dexamethasone and a five-day treatment course of remdesivir.

“If he continues to look and feel as well as he does today, our hope is that we can plan for a discharge as early as tomorrow to the White House where he can continue his treatment course,” Dr. Brian Garibaldi said. 

However, doctors not involved in treating the president said his dexamethasone treatment could be evidence that he is experiencing a more severe coronavirus case than his doctors are reporting, Reuters reported. 

“What I heard in the news conference description suggested the President has more severe illness than the generally upbeat picture painted,” said Dr. Daniel McQuillen, an infectious disease specialist at Lahey Hospital and Medical Center. 

Dexamethasone and similar steroids are used to improve survival in hospitalized patients who need extra oxygen. However, studies show that the drug may be harmful when used in patients with a milder illness. 

The National Institutes of Health released COVID-19 treatment guidelines that recommended against using dexamethasone in patients who are not on ventilators or not receiving supplemental oxygen. Prescribing the steroid too early could tamp down specific immune cells and prevent the body from fighting off the infection.

Trump’s impending release from the hospital doesn’t necessarily mean he is out of the woods. “He’s not going to go to a home where there’s no medical care. There’s basically a hospital in the White House,” Dr. Walid Gellad, professor of medicine at University of Pittsburgh, told Reuters.

Trump was flown to the hospital Friday hours after he tested positive for the novel coronavirus. White House staffers received an email Sunday that urged them to “stay home” and “do not come to work” if they showed any symptoms. 

According to The Hill, the all-staff email directed White House staff members to contact their primary care provider and inform their supervisors should they exhibit coronavirus-related symptoms. 

Donald Trump tweeted from hospital calling for US lawmakers to get a new stimulus deal done Donald Trump tweeted from hospital calling for US lawmakers to get a new stimulus deal done Photo: The White House / Tia DUFOUR

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