Improper Prescribing Practices in Kansas – The #1 Reason for Being Subject to Disciplinary Action

The pharmaceutical industry is booming.  Physicians are prescribing patients with a variety of medications today to treat an array of health issues, ranging from minor allergies to severe anxiety disorders to pain management.  Most Kansas citizens have at least one prescription medication and many have multiple prescriptions.  While there are patients who are in need of medication, many physicians are over-prescribing and allowing patients to take medications they may not really need.

The Kansas State Board of Healing Arts takes improper prescribing very seriously.  Physicians are often disciplined for their prescribing practices and are at risk for losing their licenses to practice medicine.  In fact, overprescribing is the number one reason physicians are disciplined in Kansas.  Physician prescribing practices are under a close microscope and physicians must be extremely careful in how they prescribe medication and to what patients.

Selling pharmaceuticals is a big business.  It is not surprising that many physicians feel the need and pressure to prescribe particular medications.  Pharmaceutical drug representatives encourage physicians to promote their company’s drugs.  The drive for generating revenue in the pharmaceutical industry has spilled over into the physician-patient relationship.  You want what’s best for your patient, and when there’s a medication for most ailments today, it is difficult to end a patient appointment without giving that patient a prescription for some medication.

There are many reasons to be wary of what you prescribe to patients and how often.  Addiction is a big problem that many patients suffer from and this typically involves the use of pain medications, but not always.  Any medication that may impair a patient’s ability to function that is potentially addictive can have severe consequences for both the patient and you, as the physician.

For example, if you believe a patient has an addiction to pain medication yet you continue to prescribe the medication, and the patient ends up harming a third-party in a car accident or other altercation, the patient may place the blame on you for giving the patient a medication that you know the patient is addicted to.  Obviously, you did not directly harm the victim of the car accident.  However, the patient may look to blame anyone else but him or herself.  This may result in the patient filing a complaint with the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts, and before you know it, you are the subject of an investigation.

Further, pharmacies are now keeping track of controlled substances that are being prescribed.  This tracks not only the patient’s use of the drugs, but the physician who is prescribing the controlled substance.  This may alert the Kansas State Board of Healing Arts that you are a physician that prescribes particular medications on a regular basis to many different patients.

With the technology today, you, as a physician, should assume that every move you make is being tracked.  You should use your best judgment as a medical professional and prescribe medication when you believe your patient truly needs it and the medication is the best of any option for treatment.  But, if you find yourself prescribing medication for nearly every patient, and especially prescribing any medication that may alter or impair a patient’s behavior, be aware that you may be subject to disciplinary action and your medical license could be on the line.

If you are a physician who has received a notice of potential disciplinary action due to improper prescribing practices, or if you want advice on what constitutes proper prescribing practices, contact an attorney experienced in the field of defending licensed professionals.  Danielle Sanger of the Sanger Law Office has the knowledge, drive and expertise to defend you and help protect your medical license in the state of Kansas.  The Sanger Law Office will provide you with a free consultation.  Contact our office today to schedule an appointment by calling (785) 979-4353.  Danielle Sanger will help you understand your responsibilities for practicing medicine in Kansas.

Comments are closed.