DETROIT, Dec. 15 (UPI) -- Colleagues of a Michigan pilot who posed as a cardiologist say they are stunned at the fraud he pulled off for years.
William Hamman, 58, a licensed pilot who worked for United Airlines, secured millions of dollars in research grants for Western Michigan University and Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak directing simulated medical exercises to train hospital staffers, The Detroit Free Press reported.
But he never treated patients and did not apply for admitting privileges at Beaumont. A suspicious staffer contacted the University of Wisconsin and confirmed Hamman was not the M.D. and Ph.D. he claimed to be. Hamman resigned in June as director of Beaumont's medical simulation and research program when exposed.
"He was quite good at what he did," Dr. Cindy Grines, a cardiologist at Beaumont, told ABC News. "He focused on his experience as a pilot, and used these skills to develop computer simulations, to implement team strategies to expedite patient care."
Hamman also impressed doctors elsewhere.
"He seemed to be a bright guy and wanted to teach others how to perform better in the team environment," said Dr. W. Douglas Weaver, a past president of the American College of Cardiology.