License Revocation of Walter W. Stoll, Jr., M.D.
Stephen Barrett, M.D.
COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY
FINDINGS OF FACT AND CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
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The Defendant, Walter W. Stoll, Jr., M.D., was charged with undertaking to care and treat Patient “A” without first performing a history and physical examination on said patient or having access to recent medical data on Patient “A” and/or on Patient “A’s” medical condition. Further, Defendant/s conduct in communicating with Patient “A” was unprofessional. It was also charged that sufficient grounds exist for discipline to be taken against the license to practice in the Commonwealth of Kentucky held by Defendant, and that the conduct delineated aforesaid constituted dishonorable, unethical and unprofessional conduct in violation of KRS 311.595(8) .
Further and specifically, it was charged that Defendant/s conduct is calculated or has the effect of bringing the medical profession into disrepute as his conduct failed to conform to the principals of medical ethics and was a departure from and failure to conform to the standards of acceptable and prevailing medical practice within the Commonwealth of Kentucky in violation of KRS 311.597(4).
The Board was represented by Wes Faulkner, General Counsel for the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure. The Defendant, originally, was represented by Robert E. Reeves of Lexington, Kentucky. At a pre-hearing conference, the former counsel, Mr. Reeves, was permitted to withdraw from the case, however, the hearing officer stated that the final hearing would still be scheduled for Tuesday, August 23, 1994, beginning at 9:00 a.m. The hearing was held on that date, but Dr. Stoll did not appear nor bring substitute counsel. He did write a letter indicating that he was not planning to appear at the hearing.
Doug Wilson, Medical Investigator for the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure, testified on behalf of the Board. The case was furnished to the Board by the Fayette County Medical Society. Patient “A” had filed a grievance with the Kentucky Medical Association against Dr. Stoll, but Dr. Stoll is not a member of that Association and when she was advised of this, she requested that a copy of her Complaint be sent to the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure.
The facts appear to be delineated in a letter dated June 30, 1990 addressed to Dr. Stoll from Patient “A’s” home in New York. She stated:
Originally, Patient A had heard of Dr. Stoll because he had dealt with intestinal parasites and she believed that she might have such a problem. She called Dr. Stoll by telephone and he never saw the patient but advised her to have her stool and blood test taken by a lab to determine whether she had parasites, and he indicated to her that there was only one laboratory in the United States who could perform this service. The name of the laboratory was Ibile Diagnostic Parasitology Labs, Incorporated, Phoenix, Arizona. Mr. Wilson saw Dr. Stoll and requested his view of the situation. Dr. Stoll wrote a letter to Mr. Wilson, which was received on December J, 1990, which we shall paraphrase as follows:
Thus, Dr. Stoll’s only contact with the patient was by telephone and having received the report from the laboratory in Arizona. Patient A was incensed that Dr. Stoll had indicated that she had parasites when the physicians in New York determined that she had not and she refused to pay his bills. He admitted in his letter to Investigator Wilson that he never saw the patient at any time and that his only communication with her was by telephone and by letter.
When Dr. Stoll received Patient A’s letter, he wrote back, in script, on the very letter that she sent, as follows:
Dr. Julio Melo, a physician in Louisville who specializes in infectious diseases diagnosis, was consulted by the Board. Dr. Melo, by letter dated December 4, 1991, wrote:
On the date of the hearing, Dr. Melo also testified by conference telephone and this hearing officer asked him whether or not the existence of parasites could be discovered via laboratory tests and results, and Dr. Melo replied that certainly laboratory tests could discover whether parasites exist but that without a examination of the patient and performing a history of the patient, one could not tell whether the parasites were causing the patient’s condition. In fact, many people may have parasites within their system which cause no symptoms. Thus, he indicated that it was absolutely necessary for the physician to have seen the patient first before making a diagnosis.
CONCLUSIONS OF FACT AND LAW
Dr. Stoll’s only contact with Patient “A” was via telephone and by letter. He did have a report from the laboratory in Arizona, but he never saw the patient or examined her. His return letter to her was not very professional in the manner in which he returned it nor in the terminology use in his reply.
Further, this Board has previously entered an Order of Probation and Restriction on Dr. Stoll’s Kentucky medical license. This Order of probation and Restriction was appealed to the Jefferson Circuit Court and was stayed pending the appeal. The appeal is still pending in the Jefferson Circuit Court and has not been acted upon. One of the findings of fact in the previous case concerning Dr. Stoll is set. out in Finding No. 8 of the Hearing Officer, “The Respondent first met Ms. B.K. in 1972 while he was working in Ohio and she lived in New York. Ms. K informed Respondent of a problem with depression over the years. The Respondent learned she had been taking amphetamines for approximately ten years prior to seeing him. Between 1972 and the date of Ms. K’s deposition (February 1, 1988), Ms. K was examined twice by the Respondent. Initially, a local drugstore in Ohio filled and mailed the prescriptions to Ms. K. After moving to Lexington, the Respondent again sent the prescriptions to be filled by a local drugstore and mailed to Ms. K. However, after a period of time, the drugstore refused to fill the prescriptions in such a manner. As a result, the Respondent began ordering the amphetamines himself and mailed them to Ms. K upon her written request.”
We cite that previous finding, on which this Board entered an Order of Probation, to indicate that Dr. Stoll had previously given prescriptions to a patient without having seen the patient but a very few times over a ten year period.
This Hearing Officer finds that the Defendant did undertake the care and treatment of Patient “A” without first performing a history and physical examination on the patient or having access to recent medical data on her and her medical condition, and that such conduct was unprofessional. Further, this Hearing Officer finds that there are sufficient grounds which exist for discipline to be taken against his license to practice medicine in the Commonwealth of Kentucky and that the conduct delineated constituted dishonorable, unethical and unprofessional conduct in violation KRS 311.595(8) and KRS 311.597(4) .
The Board should take note that this is not the first conduct which the Defendant was charged with and that an Order of Probation, which has not been acted upon, is still pending in the Jefferson circuit Court.
Pursuant to the 1994 amendments to the Medical Practice Act, specifically KRS 311.591(7), “upon completion of the hearing process, the hearing officer shall prepare proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law, but shall not make a recommended disposition…”
ENTERED this 8th day of November, 1994.
MARTIN GLAZER, Hearing Officer
This article was posted on January 7, 2003.