BEFORE THE STATE BOARD OF MEDICAL EXAMINERS
By agreement of the Composite State Board of Medical Examiners and STEPHEN B. EDELSON, M.D., Respondent, the following disposition of this matter is entered pursuant to the provisions of the Georgia Administrative Procedure Act, codified as O.C.G.A. Section 50-13-13(a)(4).
FINDINGS OF FACT
The Respondent is licensed to practice medicine in the State of Georgia and was so licensed at all times relevant to the matters stated herein.
The Respondent admits that he prescribed Schedule II, III and IV narcotics to members of his family and prescribed non-scheduled drugs for self-use in violation of Rule 360-2.09 (g) of the Board’s rules, and did not keep adequate records of such prescription practices in violation of Board Rule 360-2.09 (d).
Respondent admits that one of the charts in question did not contain documentation of an initial physical examination, and the other chart in question did not have adequate progress notes which constitutes a violation of O.C.G.A. 43-34-37(7).
Based upon the foregoing admissions, the Respondent waives any further findings of fact with respect to the above matter and agrees that the Board may enter this Order without the necessity of receiving evidence in support thereof.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
Respondent’s admissions in the Findings of Fact constitute sufficient grounds for disciplinary action under O.C.G.A. Chs. 1 and 34, T. 43 as amended. The Respondent hereby waives any further conclusions of law with respect to the above-styled matter.
The Composite state Board of Medical Examiners, having considered the particular facts and circumstances of this case, hereby orders, and the Respondent hereby agrees to the following terms of discipline:
Respondent’s license shall be placed on probation for a period of two (2) years, with the following terms and conditions of probation:
(a) Respondent shall not perform chelation therapy except treatment of documented cases of heavy metal poisoning at any in location (hospital or outpatient). However, Respondent shall be permitted to perform chelation therapy in connection with formal clinical trials for which he has been approved as a clinical investigator. Any question pertaining to the interpretation of the restriction contained herein shall be directed to the Board in writing, c/o the Medical Coordinator, prior to the performance of any such procedure, and the burden of ascertaining whether any particular procedure falls within or without the scope of this restriction shall be upon the Respondent. If the Respondent shall engage in the practice of medicine in violation of this provision, his license shall be subject to further discipline, including but not limited to revocation, upon substantiation thereof. In case of a bona fide, life-threatening emergency, Respondent shall not be restricted from rendering appropriate treatment, but shall promptly submit a report documenting his treatment to the Medical Coordinator.
(b) Respondent shall submit to the Board for its approval a program of twenty (20) hours per year of continuing education approved by both the American Medical Association and the Board, which the Respondent shall complete within the probationary period and provide documentation thereof to the Board. The requirements set forth in this sub-paragraph shall be in addition to the requirements set forth in O.C.G.A. Section 43-34-3.
(c) The Respondent shall personally maintain on a daily basis an accurate and separate log of all Schedule II, III and IV controlled substances, and prescription drugs prescribed, administered, or dispensed in his office or their generic equivalents. The log shall contain the date, drug, strength, amount, and diagnosis or reason for prescribing. Provided, further, that if such drug is prescribed, administered, or dispensed, etc. to the same patient more than once, the Respondent shall justify the continued prescribing of said drug on the patient’s office clinical record. Respondent shall not prescribe any controlled substance for his personal use or for use by his family members (including parents). The Respondent’s prescribing.practices shall be closely monitored throughout the probationary period.
(d) Should the Drug Enforcement Administration determine after lawful proceedings that Respondent’s DEA registration should be rescinded or more restricted than is outlined herein, such finding will supersede any provisions of this consent order relating to controlled substances.
(e) The Respondent shall complete the course “Appropriate Prescribing of Controlled Substances” offered by the Southern School of Pharmacy at Mercer University in Atlanta within the probationary period and provide documentation thereof to the Board.
(f) The Respondent shall in all respects comply with Board Rule 360-2-.09, relating to diagnosis, treatment and record keeping.
(g) Respondent’s advertising and other written (including, but not limited to electronic and video media) statements to the public relating to his medical practice shall comply in all respects with,O.C.G.A. § 43-34-37(a) (6).
(h) The Medical Coordinator or another representative of the Board shall periodically review and inspect, at any reasonable time designated by the representative, the Respondent’s office, hospital or nursing home records and any required lobs, as deemed necessary. The Respondent shall have the right to be present during such inspection of records, and the rights of privacy and confidentiality of patients shall be maintained. The Respondent shall be available, upon reasonable notice, for personal interviews with the Medical Coordinator or other representative of the Board. Failure of the Respondent to be reasonably available for inspection of his records or for personal interviews with a Board representative shall be considered a violation of this Consent Order.
(i) If Respondent employs a physician’s assistant in his practice, Respondent shall not utilize the physician’s assistant to perform tasks which are otherwise prohibited by the terms of this Consent Order, or otherwise utilize the services of the physician’s assistant in such a way as to circumvent any restriction, term or condition outlined herein.
(j) In the event the Respondent should leave the State of Georgia to reside or practice outside of Georgia for periods longer than thirty (30) consecutive days, the Respondent shall notify the Board in writing of the dates of departure and return. Respondent need not remain in Georgia during the suspension period. Periods of residency or practice outside of Georgia will not apply to the reduction of the Respondent’s probationary period, unless otherwise authorized by the Board under such conditions as the Board deems acceptable. The Respondent shall advise the Board of any change in his practice status and address of record.
(k) The Respondent shall supply a copy of this Consent Order, once approved and docketed, and within ten (10) days from receipt of the docketed copy by Respondent, to each hospital or other institution in Georgia where Respondent currently maintains staff privileges of any kind, and to any person with whom Respondent is currently associated in practice, including other physicians or physician’s assistants or to any person or entity for whom Respondent is currently employed as a physician in the State of Georgia. Respondent shall also be required to disclose the existence of and provide a copy of this Consent Order to such individuals or entities in connection with any future application for institutional appointment, associated practice, utilization of a physician’s assistant, or employment as a physician in the State of Georgia during the term of Respondent’s probation. By executing this Consent Order, Respondent specifically consents to any such individuals or entities reporting to the Board information which would affect Respondent’s ability to practice medicine with reasonable skill and safety to patients, notwithstanding any privilege provided by state or federal law.
(1) The Respondent shall abide by all State and Federal laws regulating the practice of medicine or relating to drugs, the Rules and Regulations of the Composite state Board of Medical Examiners, and the terms of this Consent Order and probation. If the Respondent shall fail to abide by such laws, rules or terms, or if it should appear from monitoring reports submitted to the Board that the Respondent is otherwise unable to practice medicine with reasonable skill and safety to patients, the Respondent’s license shall be subject to further discipline, including revocation, upon substantiation thereof after notice and hearing, and if revoked the Board in its discretion may determine that the license should be permanently revoked and not subject to reinstatement.
(m) Within 60 days from the scheduled date of termination of probation, Respondent may petition for termination of probation by certifying under oath before a notary public that the Respondent has complied with all conditions of probation. The Composite state Board of Medical Examiners shall be authorized to review and evaluate the practice of the Respondent prior to lifting the probation.
At such time, the Board shall be authorized to restore all rights and privileges incident to the license of the Respondent, unless the Board has received information that the Respondent has not complied with the terms of the probation or has otherwise failed to comply with the laws and rules regulating the practice of medicine. Should the Board determine that reasonable cause exists for maintaining Respondent’s license on probationary status, the Board shall notify Respondent of its intent to extend the probationary period, and Respondent may respond to such notice in writin
Commencing with the effective date of this Order and continuing until further order of the Board, Respondent shall disclose in writing to each patient the cost of each treatment, procedure and service to be rendered and clearly state that such treatment, procedure and service may not be covered by the patient’s insurance (if applicable), and if not, that the patient will be responsible for the uncovered charges. The intent of this provision is to ensure that each patient knows in advance that insurance may not cover any or all of the charges for Respondent’s treatment, procedures and services and that they will be responsible for all charges not paid or reimbursed by insurance.
In addition to and in conjunction with any other sanction contained herein, this Consent Order and dissemination thereof shall serve as a public reprimand to the Respondent for his conduct.
In addition to and in conjunction with any other sanction contained herein, Respondent shall pay a fine of $5,000, payable by certified check to the Board.
Respondent, Stephen B. Edelson, M.D., acknowledges that he is represented by counsel in this matter, that he has read this Consent Order and discussed it with counsel. Respondent understands that he has the right to a hearing in this matter, and Respondent freely, knowingly and voluntarily waives such right by entering into this Consent Order. Respondent understands that this Consent Order will not become effective until approved by the Composite State Board of Medical Examiners and docketed by the Joint Secretary. Respondent further understands and agrees that a representative of the Department of Law may be present during presentation of this Consent Order to the Board and that the Board shall have the authority to review the investigative file and all relevant evidence in considering this Consent Order. Respondent further understands that this Consent Order, once approved and docketed, shall constitute a public record which may be disseminated as a disciplinary action of the Board. If this Consent Order is not approved, it shall not. constitute an admission against interest in this proceeding, or prejudice the ability of the Board to adjudicate this matter. Respondent consents to the terms of discipline contained herein.
Approved, this 5th day of April, 1995
This page was posted on October 18, 2003.