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Iowa Board of Medicine Director Abruptly Retires Following Suspension, Reinstatement

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Jennifer Morrow

The executive director of Iowa’s medical regulatory board has abruptly retired, saying he was treated unfairly by state officials.

The Iowa Board of Medicine put executive director Mark Bowden on administrative leave about a month ago, and voted to reinstate him Friday.

Board members then scheduled a meeting for Monday morning to consider Bowden’s employment status. His retirement was announced instead.

In a letter dated Friday, July 27, Bowden wrote his work over the past eight months has been hindered by “substantial deficiencies in service and a lack of adequate support from the Department of Public Health and the Department of Administrative Services.”

“The grossly unfair way in which I was treated by the personnel staff of these departments and state counsel during the past month broke the trust and confidence I need to effectively lead and administer the agency,” Bowden wrote.

State officials will not say why Bowden, who led the board for 10 years, was suspended for a month.

“Since Mark Bowden was an employee of the Iowa Board of Medicine and not the department, the Iowa Department of Public Health will not provide information indicating why he was put on administrative leave,” said IDPH spokeswoman Shaela Meister in an email.

Calls to the Board of Medicine and the Department of Administrative Services were not returned as of Monday afternoon. The Iowa Department of Public Health had no comment on Bowden’s retirement letter.

Katarina Sostaric is IPR's State Government Reporter