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October 21, 2021

TN Physician Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison ForIllegitimate Opioid Prescribing Practices that Led to Patient Death

The DOJ announced the sentencing of a Tennessee physician for prescribing controlled substances outside the scope of professional practice without a legitimate medical purpose, among other practices. Such misconduct resulted in the death of a patient from a hydrocodone overdose. The physician continued to prescribe opioids to the patient, despite indicators of medical inappropriateness that the physician himself recorded in the patient’s medical record. The DOJ asserted that the physician’s conduct exemplified a “blatant disregard for the Hippocratic Oath” by endangering “his patients’ lives through illegitimate and reckless prescribing.” DHHS-OIG made it clear that DHHS plans to work closely with other government partners in order to “continue to hold accountable medical professionals whose illicit activities endanger the lives of patients in their care.”