Democrats in Oregon filed an ethics complaint against orthopedic surgeon and state representative Knute Buehler, MD, R-Bend, over unreported payments from medical device and pharmaceutical companies, according to The Bulletin.
The ethics complaint alleges Dr. Buehler didn't disclose payments he received from Stryker and Pfizer while serving as a state representative from 2013 to 2015.
The payments made from Stryker and Pfizer to Dr. Buehler are available on the CMS Open Payment Program. Dr. Buehler's office reported he sought guidance from the ethics commission on the payments, but Stryker wasn't a "business with which [he] is associated" according to state statutes.
According to the Open Payments data, Dr. Buehler received 13 payments from Stryker in 2013 totaling $15,854; $12,250 was consulting fees. The following year he received payments totaling $52,367 with consulting fees reaching $35,250. In 2015, Dr. Buehler received $27,723.98 from Stryker with consulting fees of $17,000. All the payments from Stryker were made directly to Dr. Buehler.
He also received $1,000 from Pfizer in 2014.
Dr. Buehler alleges the charges are "politically motivated" and called them an abuse of the ethics process. He is a rumored potential candidate for the Oregon governorship election in 2018.