Summer 2013
Volume 2, Issue 3

"DRUG USING DOC"

PRESCRIBING TO FAMILY AND SELF WITHOUT ADEQUATE RECORDKEEPING During interview with Investigators from the Drug Enforcement Administration at his medical practice, physician admitted dispensing medications, including Controlled Dangerous Substances, to family members without maintaining medical records for these patients, and that he also administered CDS medication to himself. Physician surrendered New Jersey CDS and DEA registrations to investigators and thereafter appeared before Board’s Preliminary Evaluation Committee to explain circumstances of prescribing for family members and that physician was self-prescribing for legitimate medical condition. Physician agreed to participate in Board’s Professional Assistance Program which confirmed that physician was self-prescribing for legitimate medical condition. Board agreed to re-issue physician’s CDS registration upon continued participation in the PAP, including submitting to random drug screening. Upon reissuance of his DEA registration, physician must utilize secure, duplicate-copy prescription pads and maintain the duplicate copy of all issued prescriptions in the applicable patient’s records. Order was entered without limiting the authority of the NJ Attorney General or any other state or federal agency to initiate an action in connection with any matters in relation to the physician’s conduct.


IN OTHER NEWS...

ILLEGAL CDS PRESCRIBING AND DISTRIBUTION Physician’s license suspended after being arrested and charged with issuing prescriptions for CDS without a legitimate medical purpose. This arrest followed an investigation by the DEA and local police over five months during which physician wrote hundreds of prescriptions for Oxycodone and other CDS without conducting physical examinations and in exchange for cash payments; sold prescriptions for Oxycodone and Percocet to undercover investigators; and according to records obtained from a healthcare pharmacy, prescribed 39,730 Percocet tablets in one year. Physician pleaded guilty to unlawful distribution of Oxycodone without a legitimate medical purpose and outside the usual course of professional practice and sentenced to one year and one day in prison. As a result of the guilty plea, Board found physician to have engaged in professional misconduct; been convicted of acts constituting crimes or offenses involving moral turpitude and/or relating adversely to the practice of medicine; prescribed controlled dangerous substances indiscriminately or without good cause; and failed to demonstrate on-going good moral character, resulting in physician’s surrender of his medical license.

RECORD-KEEPING FAILURES AND FALSIFICATIONS The Board commenced investigation of physician’s conduct upon receipt of notification from the physician’s hospital employer that his clinical privileges were suspended for twenty-seven days (and thereafter conditionally reinstated with requirements that he was to be subject to a focused professional practice evaluation and a one year prohibition on taking emergency room call) following an investigation of a complaint regarding his care of a patient and allegations of possible falsification of the patient’s medical record. Physician admitted to backdating notes and that he was warned previously in writing by his employer that his conduct was not acceptable and advised that he needed to see patients daily and to date progress notes honestly. Based on those facts, the Board further found cause for disciplinary action exist pursuant to N.J.S.A. 45:1-21b (engaging in the use or employment of dishonesty, fraud, deception, misrepresentation, false promise or false pretense), and/or N.J.S.A. 45:1-21e (engaging in professional misconduct). Board ordered that physician be formally reprimanded, pay a penalty in the amount of $5,000.00, and complete courses pre-approved by the Board in medical record keeping and professional ethics.

LICENSE APPLICATION DOCUMENTATION REVEALS UNLICENSED PRACTICE As part of application for Athletic Trainer license, which was issued, Board received additional correspondence from educational institution revealing that licensee had practiced athletic training while serving as an assistant athletic trainer for a period of one year, without a license. Licensee agreed to be reprimanded for engaging in the unlicensed practice of athletic training and paid a $1,000.00 civil penalty for violating the Athletic Training Practice Act.


THE PHYSICIAN ADVOCACY PROGRAM®
Far too few physicians are aware of the overwhelming weight that would befall them if targeted by the SBME. For SBME Protection go to ThePAP.com.