Skip to content

Police Exhibit #69 (page 1)

History of Saskatoon MDs

Justice Ministry:  Exhibit Numbers

This document, called the History/Affidavit, was processed by three different branches of Sask Justice. Each recipient assigned his own exhibit number:

Sgt. James Bracken labeled his copy:
Police Exhibit #69.

Prosecutor Fred Dehm labeled his copy:
Crown Exhibit #82.

When the document was filed in Saskatoon Provincial Court at the Preliminary Inquiry, Judge Singer assigned this final number:
Court Exhibit D-2.

Sgt. Bracken Police Exhibit #69
Fred Dehm Crown Exhibit #82
Judge Singer Court Exhibit D-2

Dr. Joel Yelland: Destruction of Medical Relationships

Dr. Yelland was my family physician from Feb 1/98 to June 6/01. Initially his manner showed decorum and technical interests, and thus I place my trust in him. For progress with my physical diseases, I requested specialist referrals, but while Dr. Yelland sounded cooperative in conversation with me about these, in fact each referral was hampered by inadequate record-keeping and impetuous emotional commentary from Dr. Yelland.

The result was to take away all my sources of medical support. In January 2001 Dr. Yelland began to openly brag about this.

Endocrinologist Dr. David Kendler:  In 1998, endocrinologist Dr. Kendler of Vancouver expressed interest in the technical complexity of my case and offered to coordinate my overall care. Dr. Yelland noted this and replied with an impetuous letter claiming I was “disenchanted with medicine in Saskatoon.” Four days later, Dr. Kendler wrote back saying “There was no need for this patient to return to their office.” The letters are attached.

Orthopedist Dr. Jeff McKerrell:  In 1999, an orthopedist was needed based on two intensely hot Bone Scans. The persistence of the positive Scans was significant. But Dr. Yelland sent only one Scan report to Dr. McKerrell, and scrawled on the referral form, “Don't know whether to take this seriously.”

Physical Medicine Specialist Dr. Lila Rudachyk:  In Sept/98 a painful complication named Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy developed post-surgery in my right foot. Few treatments are known, and this dearth of knowledge is world-wide (see medical textbooks). I requested a referral to a Physical Medicine Specialist, for such advice as was possible. Dr. Yelland “agreed” to make the referral, but during my weeks on the waiting list, he called the specialist to claim “You never find anything wrong with this patient.” When my appointment came due, I brought in to the specialist my Bone Scan reports plus the actual films showing the devastating extent of the disease. But the planted hostility was too much for me to overcome. Dr. Rudachyk said she “could perceive an adversarial dynamic,” and she refused her services.

Note that Dr. Yelland, above all, knew the condition of my foot, its severity, and its objective nature, since he himself had seen first-hand the swelling, discoloration, and other sequel. His own report listing these observations is attached.

It was Dr. Yelland who made the original referral for my bone biopsy, which led to this painful complication. Subsequently, on the one hand he offered palliative treatment, but on the other hand withheld any substantial care, and his motive may include guilt.

Rheumatologist Dr. Milton Baker:  I had successfully consulted rheumatologist Dr. Milton Baker of Victoria, B.C. twice (in 1998 and 1999). Then when my Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy onset, I requested another referral. But Dr. Yelland faxed only a minimal form; he failed to list the significant medical data acquired since my last consult; he refused to acknowledge that Dr. Baker's previous ideas had worked; and he failed to attach my Bone Scans, CT Scans, or other positive evidence. When I asked Dr. Yelland why his form was so minimal, he looked smug and said “I can't answer that.” Dr. Yelland then told me that if I wanted Dr. Baker to have this data, I would have to send it myself. I did so, but when I arrived in Victoria, Dr. Baker felt slighted that the information came from the patient, instead of the GP.

After my consult in Victoria, Dr. Baker sent a report filled with good technical ideas, but also expressing rage (the first of his reports to do so). When I asked Dr. Yelland about the unexpected vitriol, he smirked so broadly his face glowed; as he left the room he said with infinite smugness, “I know how much you valued your relationship with Dr. Baker.” This conversation occurred in January 2001.

Dr. Baker had offered many good ideas to modify the underlying disease process, as opposed to just palliating symptoms, but despite my repeat requests, Dr. Yelland refused to follow up. I was left doing 90% of the work myself, and this included studying research journals at the University of Saskatchewan Health Sciences Library.

This, plus the escalating emotional violence from Dr. Yelland, caused me to take steps to terminate my relationship with him.

Pivot Point:  The Report from Dr. Roy Chernoff

Circa Jan/Feb 2001, an old medical letter was needed for reference, which I brought in to Dr. Yelland. This letter dated 1986 was written by Dr. Roy Chernoff, and presented my case in a particularly positive light. Note while the letter was old, Dr. Yelland's awareness of it was new. Within two weeks, Dr. Yelland gave abrupt notice to leave his current employ at the MediClinic on 8th Street, and announced plans to join the office of Dr. Chernoff on Pacific Avenue. Question: Did Dr. Yelland identify yet another good relationship I had, which he felt compelled to destroy? A copy of the letter is attached.

As a diplomatic step to end my relationship with Dr. Yelland, I asked the 8th-Street MediClinic if I could stay on while Dr. Yelland moved to Pacific Avenue. Initially, the MediClinic agreed, but after one conversation with Dr. Yelland, their manner abruptly changed. As a result, the MediClinic head Dr. Lacny refused to take my case, and in the appointment explaining this, I heard language which was lewd, jeering, an attack on my character, and which suggested I “liked” or “expected” to hear such sleaze. I ended in tears, and told Dr. Lacny he was forcing me (at least temporarily) to return to Dr. Yelland. Dr. Lacny said “Yes” (I don't know how to interpret this, except to say that Dr. Yelland himself arranged the continuance with him).

Dr. Lacny's letter of refusal was dated March 16, 2001, yet I didn't actually see him until March 21, 2001.

Addressing Misconduct from a Doctor

My health profile onset in 1984-1985. In the years since, whenever I needed to address the conduct of a doctor, I followed a logical series of steps: First, I discussed my concerns with the doctor in a booked appointment. If that failed, I wrote my concerns in a letter to the doctor; this is the step recommended by the governing body, the College of Physicians and Surgeons. If the issue was still unresolved, I then made a decision whether to file a formal complaint with the College, or simply leave the relationship and locate another physicians.

I reserved formal complaints for only the most serious incidents. This approach did incite resentment from the doctor, which rippled through the entire medical community. The most serious previous issues are summarized below (documentation is attached):

Dr. Blocka:  Medical Mismanagement and Harassment

Rheumatologist Dr. Kenneth Blocka failed to exercise due care and attention in his referral of my case to the Mayo Clinic in 1986. In consequence, the superior resources of the Mayo Clinic were denied to me. Dr. Blocka reacted in a discreditable manner to these revelations. When his technical mistakes came to light, Dr. Blocka feared being held to account and issued such an emotional backlash affecting all my then-physician relationships, that I felt subjected to emotional rape, not just once but over and over again. I heard from my GP Dr. Chernoff and other specialists that “Doctors were very angry,” and that “Dr. Blocka was trying to find out all your sources of support” with the goal of “trying to turn them into sources of harassment,” as he was sure that “If you bash somebody long enough they will eventually break down.”

I took this to the authorities, and filed two affidavits in Queen's Bench Court (case Q.B. 514 of 1987). Dr. Blocka was required to sign an Undertaking with the force of a Restraining Order.

I could not proceed further with the case, as I contracted a paralytic muscle disease named Guillain-Barre Syndrome in 1989. Documented fact: My then-neurologist Dr. Peter Siemens withheld the standard treatment of Plasmapheresis, which may have shortened the course of the disease; this is the only known effective treatment. My neurologist's reason cited for not giving Plasmapheresis was “You wouldn't want to go to University Hospital” after filing my complaint against their physician Dr. Blocka.

The recovery from Guillain-Barre is a long road back, and would be so even with treatment. Since I was too ill to move to another city, I was left dealing with a medical community where emotional resentments lingered.

Georgena S. Sil
Saskatoon, Canada
Physicist & Technical Writer
Alumnus: University of British Columbia
Twitter Facebook Linked In Google+
Millet Painting: Man with a Hoe

Man with a Hoe (Millet, 1862)

How will you ever
straighten up this shape;
Give back the upward
looking and the light;
Rebuild in it the music
and the dream.

The Man with the Hoe (1899)

Edwin Markham

Copyright © 2008-2019 Georgena Sil. All Rights Reserved.