Prosecutors Must Prove Ill Intent in ‘Pill Mill’ Cases

In an unanimous decision, the US Supreme Court set aside the convictions of two physicians accused of violating the Controlled Substances Act (1970) and running “pill mills.” The cases were sent back to their respective jurisdictions to be reheard in order to consider whether the juries were properly instructed. If they were not, said the … Read more

Hero Physician Slain in CA Attack Remembered as ‘One in a Million’

The murder earlier this month of John Cheng, MD, a family physician who died trying to disarm a shooter inside a Taiwanese church, has left members of the Asian American community in Southern California reeling. Cheng, 52, was struck with three bullets while rushing toward the gunman, according to a witness account published in The … Read more

Don’t Equate Mass Shootings With Mental Illness

Here we go, again, and again, and again. There just aren’t enough tears, and before the bodies of 19 small children are identified, the political noise starts up. Mass shootings are a part of the American landscape, but when they happen at schools, we all feel a distinct sense of violation and gaping grief. Those … Read more

A Psychiatric Patient Confesses to Murder: Now What?

NEW ORLEANS – The patient, a 60-year-old woman who’d just tried to kill herself by overdosing on gabapentin, felt the need to make a confession. As she told a resident psychiatrist late one night at a Philadelphia crisis response center, she’d just murdered two people and buried them in her backyard. More details kept coming, … Read more

ACOG Drops 2023 New Orleans Meeting Over Abortion Concerns

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) has scrapped a plan to hold its 2023 annual clinical and scientific meeting in New Orleans, saying it cannot convene in a place where its members might face punishment for providing or even discussing abortion care. The nation’s largest OB-GYN group said it hopes other medical organizations … Read more

Top Drug Official Wants New Approach to Abuse Crisis

When a chemical spill left 300,000 West Virginians in need of clean drinking water and a public official they could trust, Rahul Gupta, MD, MPH, was there. When the March of Dimes needed a voice to fight legislation that threatened to gut healthcare for pregnant women, Gupta was front and center. Dr Rahul Gupta, MD … Read more

Medications for Opioid Addiction Vastly Underutilized

Despite a record number of drug overdose deaths in the US and a large body of evidence supporting the efficacy of medications to treat opioid use disorder (OUD) these drugs remain vastly underutilized, new research shows. Based on data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), investigators found only one in four … Read more

Tourette Patients Vulnerable to Assault, Criminal Behavior

Patients with Tourette syndrome (TS) are more likely to be assaulted or to perpetrate a crime, new research shows. Results of a large study show that compared to the general population, patients with TS were twice as likely to be assaulted and three times more likely to commit a crime. However, study investigator David Mataix-Cols, … Read more

Will Physician Intent Matter in SCOTUS Pill Mill Cases?

Legal experts are divided on whether the US Supreme Court’s eventual decision on the cases of two physicians convicted for illegal opioid distribution will have precedent-setting implications for medicine. Attorneys for Xiulu Ruan, MD, and Shakeel Kahn, MD, both pain management specialists, argued — along with some medical organizations, business groups, and law professors, through … Read more

12 Physicians Sentenced in Illegal Opioid, Billing Fraud Scheme

Twelve physicians in Michigan and Ohio were to prison because of their involvement in distributing 6.6 million opioid pills, according to the US Department of Justice (DOJ). The defendants’ activities also resulted in more than $250 million in false billings. “It is unconscionable that doctors and healthcare professionals would violate their oath to do no … Read more