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The Sad Tale of the USC Medical School Dean

It is unfortunate, that situation at USC Medical School, where the dean, Dr. Carmen A. Puliafito had been found in a Pasadena hotel room with a 21 year old woman in “provocative clothing” who overdosed on drugs. That happened in March 2016.

Allegations, pictures and even videos of Puliafito in the company of criminals and drug addicts had been popping up since 2015. There are many pictures of him enjoying recreational medicines. He was using methamphetamine and other drugs while serving as dean of the Keck School of Medicine. While there is nothing wrong with “partying”, the use of drugs and paying for prostitutes may be crossing the line.

It is sad, when a leader abuses his or her power and commits such errors in judgement. Why does this happen? Are they so high above the ordinary workers, do they make so much money that they feel infused with invincibility, are they beyond reproach, why do they suffer such ethical lapses?

Despite the vetting we mortal doctors go through to get privileges at a healthcare or teaching facility, why did USC not detect Puliafito’s ethical deficiencies? Too often, I hear that the institution reveres a candidate and after all, this one had a Wharton MBA. Institutions hate to insult candidates with pointed inquiries. Sometimes the little discovered nuggets of deficiency are considered just minor ethical oversights….we are all human.

So, this nonsense has been going on under USC’s nose for two years. I heard astonishingly, that USC is finally making plans to fire Puliafito. What? Another two year process?

If I was graduating from the USC Medical School, I am certain that Dean Puliafito will not be handing me my degree.

But he could be a hell of a party host that evening

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