An understatement: New York State brain injury survivors and their families will be up arms if Timothy J. Feeney and his staff have any involvement in the Statewide Neurobehavioral Project; a project designed to help providers of services under the Traumatic Brain Injury Waiver. In fact, if there were an Olympic event for understatements and you uttered the preceding sentence, you might just win gold.
I was asked recently if I knew if a contract had been signed that would bring Feeney back. While I’ve heard from an array of sources that Feeney and his minions are scampering around claiming they are under contract, I do not think the contract has been signed. If you’re a regular reader of this blog you’ll recall that for 15 years while working under contract with the department of health, Feeney misrepresented his educational credentials to New York State Officials, people with brain injuries of all ages, children with disabilities, educational institutions, and healthcare providers. It may be that he did so in courts as well. An avenue of investigative interest for sure.
If you think having the bogusness of his credentials exposed in 2008 by this writer dissuaded him from continuing the ruse, you’re wrong. Feeney continued and continues to present himself as having a PhD and a Masters Degree. The truth? He has neither. Feeney was issued these “degrees” by a business called Greenwich University; a dip0loma mill. “Degrees” from Greenwich are not valid anywhere in the world.
Let me just say that I’ve known people with real doctorates and real masters degrees and my father taught at Columbia University and John Jay College of Criminal Justice. People pour their blood, sweat and tears into getting these degrees.
If I am right that the contract has not been signed, I believe there are several reasons for this. Most will not surprise you – one might.
First, and likely the least surprising, the whole country is looking to conserve Medicaid dollars to the extreme (keep in mind Feeney was essentially being paid with your tax dollars).
Second, everyone knows that allowing Feeney and those linked to Feeney back into the fold would be a clear statement to survivors of brain injuries, their loved ones that they are second rate citizens. Why else anyone allow someone who misrepresents his credentials and those who know this and support him back into the fold? It would be like asking a geologist to oversee neurosurgery across the state (my apologies to the geologists among us).
Third, if Feeney were again part of the neurobehavioral project and investigations resulted in criminal and or civil charges against him down the road, how would anyone look if they’d entered into a contract with him, directly or indirectly, having been fully informed of his misrepresentations before doing so?! Wouldn’t any parties falling into this category find themselves on the receiving end of some fairly zealous and plausible litigation?
However, there is a fourth reason, and this is the one that might surprise you. While the public at large is quick to condemn government agencies simply because they are government agencies, such condemnations are not always accurate. All indications are that those in the New York State Department of Health genuinely do care about the quality of services being provided to survivors of brain injury in the state. And that is good news for us all.