Our mission is to promote early identification and facilitate rehabilitation of physicians and other eligible health care professionals and trainees with concerns relating to substance use disorders, mental health disorders, and/or behavioral concerns. Our goal is to coordinate assessment and treatment as well as provide monitoring and advocacy to ensure the safe practice of their profession, and the safety of the public.
Substance use and mental health disorders are chronic illnesses prevalent in the community and equally common among physicians and other health care professionals and trainees. We strive to educate the public and health professionals on the medical model of substance use disorder, and behavioral concerns including the biopsychosocial and spiritual aspects. We encourage early recognition of these disorders, and behavioral concerns, to facilitate effective, confidential treatment that preserves careers and carries the message of hope. We accomplish this through involvement with the Federation of State Physician Health Programs and cooperation with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
A physician contacted Leroy Erickson of The Educational and Scientific Trust, and said they had a physician who realized he was impaired and was undergoing rehabilitative treatment. This physician had lost his position with his group practice and the referring physician felt The Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) should take responsibility to help this physician. Mr. Erickson assisted the physician in finding a new position. Around 1975, the AMA (American Medical Association) initiated an Impaired Physician Program and not long after that, PAMED adopted their own program.
During this time, PAMED had a “hotline” to take referrals from concerned individuals. A Committee on Impaired Physicians was established to meet with these impaired physicians and try to enroll them into a rehabilitation program. Some of the physicians who served on this committee were Drs. Abram Hostetter, Jean Forrest, Preston Hoyle, and Elizabeth Gordon. These doctors and an “intervener”, if available, would attempt to arrange a meeting with the impaired physician to discuss rehabilitative alternatives. This procedure continued until 1986.
In 1985, The Educational and Scientific Trust developed a proposal to make the Impaired Physician Program a full-time program and to obtain a financial base to fund it. This program developed into what is now the Pennsylvania Physicians’ Health Program.
Relationship To Licensing Board
The PHP holds the contract with the Department of State’s Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs, Professional Health Monitoring Programs (PHMP). This contract allows the PHP to maintain the confidentiality of its physician participants while working constructively with the licensing board and monitoring and reporting on those physicians involved with the PHMP.
- Physician assistants
- Residents and medical students
- All Licensed dental professionals
- Pharmacists and pharmacy interns/students
Meet the Team
Tiffany Booher, MA, LPC, CAADC, CIP, CCSM, Director
Ms. Booher joined the PAPHP in 2013. As Program Director, Ms. Booher is responsible for direct supervision and professional development of the case management and administrative staff. In addition, Ms. Booher manages the daily delivery of program services. She holds a master’s degree in Applied Clinical Psychology and is licensed in the Commonwealth as a Professional Counselor. Ms. Booher is also board certified in Advanced Alcohol and Drug Counseling, intervention, and case management. Her favorite part of working for the PA PHP is the privilege of witnessing individuals recover and reap the rewards of creating a whole new life for themselves.
Edwin Kim, MD, DABPN, MRO, Medical Director
Dr. Kim works in an interdisciplinary team to provide monitoring and advocacy services for healthcare professionals coping with addiction or a mental illness. He conducts interviews, reviews pertinent medical issues, and provides his expertise on mental health. He is double board-certified in adult and addiction psychiatry and is a diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Dr. Kim holds additional certification as a medical review officer by the American Association of Medical Review Officers. His favorite aspect of working at the PA PHP is the collegiality and working with a close-knit team. In his free time, he enjoys hiking and road cycling.
Raymond C. Truex Jr., MD, FACS, FAANS, Medical Director
Dr. Truex is a graduate of Temple University School of Medicine and completed a rotating internship and general surgery training at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia. During the Vietnam War, he served as a Naval medical officer assigned to the Fleet Marine Force and worked in the 3rd Medical Battalion Hospital in Quang Tri, South Vietnam, and as Battalion Surgeon to Marine Infantry Units in the Pacific theatre. He returned to complete a neurosurgery residency at Temple University Hospital, followed by a fellowship in pediatric neurosurgery at Temple. He started his career in academic neurosurgery at Temple, serving as Chief of Pediatric Neurosurgery at St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children, and rising to Associate Professor of Neurosurgery at Temple. At Temple, he was recipient of the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching, was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society, and served as President of the Medical Faculty Senate.
His academic career was interrupted by physician burnout and addiction, and after entering into recovery, with the help of the Physicians’ Health Program, he relocated to Reading Hospital, where he practiced adult and pediatric neurosurgery for 27 years before retiring in 2017.
Through his involvement with organized medicine, Dr. Truex developed a personal and administrative understanding of the PA PHP, and on retirement wanted to help physicians with addictive problems, signing on as a medical director of the PA PHP. He serves as an authentic icon of physician recovery for physicians who suffer from addictive disorders.
Melissa Devonshire, MBA, CADC, CCDP, Lead Case Manager
Ms. Devonshire received her Bachelor’s in Administration of Justice from the Pennsylvania State University and her Master’s in Business Administration from Alvernia College with an emphasis on healthcare. She has over twenty years experience working in field of chemical dependency. Her responsibilities include screenings, determining appropriate level of care, contact with referrals and providers and seeing that our participants move through the process as smoothly as possible. Ms. Devonshire says that the highlight of her job is seeing a participant’s growth from the first phone call to where they are today. In her free time she enjoys gardening, spending time with family and her “fur babies” and cooking/baking.
Katie Gruber, MSW, CADC, Case Manager
Ms. Gruber answers the PA PHP’s phones, completing check-in calls and helping participants with any questions. She helps connect participants with evaluations and treatment as needed. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Addiction Counseling from Drexel University and a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Temple University. She says that every day is different and enjoys helping the participants. “You never know how the day will turn out, and it is always interesting,” she says Ms. Gruber is an avid reader and traveler likes to go to the local bookstore when travelling.
Alice Dunkin, BS, NCPT4, Case Manager
Ms. Dunkin provides administrative and professional support to the Physicians’ Health Programs and assists in managing the dynamics of a varying caseload. Her responsibilities include taking check-in calls, reviewing charts for compliance, process releases, and entering reports. She has a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and certification from the American Association of Psychiatric Technicians. Ms. Dunkin has over 30 years of experience in the behavioral health field.
During her free time she enjoys spending time with family and friends, gardening, being creative, and practicing self-care. Ms. Dunkin is actively involved with Stand for the Silent, a nonprofit anti-bullying program as well as The Fogleman’s Wounded Warriors Music Festival.
Wendie Dunkin, Office Manager
Ms. Dunkin’s main duties at the PA PHP include managing program fees and supporting staff. She says that she loves to assist others. Wendy’s favorite thing to do is spend time with her husband of 35 years.
2022 Impact Survey Results: