Douglas B. Karel, who operated Tri-State Primary Care on Ohio River Road, presented his case in a hearing Wednesday to the State Medical Board.
“We did permanently revoke Dr. Doug Karel’s license,” said Joan Wehrle, education and outreach program manager for the OSMB. “His license has been suspended since the Summary Suspension in March. But the permanent revocation means that he is never allowed to practice in Ohio.”
Karel, who was a physician from Lima, Ohio, has worked at three pain clinics in Scioto County since 2007, according to the Medical Board. During the board’s investigation, Karel’s practice was described as a “pill mill,” basing that description on the following criteria: “The clinics did not accept insurance and worked on a cash-only basis, generally charging $200 per visit, with virtually all patients receiving prescriptions for controlled substances.”
Wehrle said The Board’s action was based on Karel’s inappropriate prescribing of large amounts of controlled substances to patients in a way that fell below the minimal standards of care applicable to the selection or administration of drugs or was without legitimate medical purpose. The Board found that the doctor failed to perform or document the performance of adequate diagnostic work-ups with respect to patients’ pain complaints; there was a lack of individualized treatment planning to treat patients suffering from various pain complaints; and the doctor failed to perform or document that he performed adequate patient histories and physical examinations to the extent that patients’ safety was put at risk.
Karel has the option to appeal the revocation to the Franklin County Common Pleas Court. If Karel appeals he could request a stay of the Board’s order. If that stay is granted, he could conceivably continue to practice until the case is heard.
FRANK LEWIS may be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 232, or firstname.lastname@example.org.