During the NFLPA’s Super Bowl week announcement that 78 percent of players polled distrust team doctors, the union called for the removal of San Diego Chargers physician Dr. David Chao.
“There is a team doctor named Dr. Chao who is currently the San Diego team doctor,” NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith said, “who has been found liable of medical malpractice twice — twice. … It seems to me that the players of the National Football League deserve to have a doctor who’s not been found liable of malpractice.”
UT-San Diego reported Saturday that Chao has been cleared of charges from the union.
Three independent doctors have unanimously ruled the Chargers’ doctor is “totally exonerated” from a player union protest he is unfit to serve in his current role, a club source said Saturday.
The report said Joint Committee of Player Safety and Welfare cleared Chao. The NFLPA had no comment, but the players Chao regularly covers supported him.
The ruling is consistent with locker room support expressed for Chao since the NFLPA news conference.
Center Nick Hardwick, the locker room’s union representative, has said he “completely” trusts the orthopedic surgeon.
Said quarterback Philip Rivers this month: “I have no complaints of the care Dr. Chao has provided me.”
– Bill Bradley, contributing editor