ANDERSON, Ind. - The license of an Anderson doctor linked to the drug-related deaths of 31 people was indefinitely suspended Wednesday by the Indiana Medical Licensing Board.
Dr. Frank Campbell must also pay a $3,000 fine for pre-signing blank prescription pads for his staff to use independently. Campbell can seek to have his license reinstated in one year.
Campbell was medical director of the Madison County Community Health Center until the Drug Enforcement Administration questioned him last year over allowing two physician assistants to prescribe controlled substances using the pre-signed prescriptions. Campbell told the board he trusted the assistants and signed the pads for expediency.
"I am not willing to say that he's malicious. I believe he's a compassionate member of the community, but I believe he violated the law," board member Dr. Worthe Holt Jr. said at the hearing, The Indianapolis Star reported.
The (Anderson) Herald Bulletin first reported that an Indiana Medicaid Fraud Control Unit was investigating Campbell. Fraud unit investigator Damon Grove wrote in an affidavit filed in Madison Circuit Court "that since January 1, 2009, 31 of Dr. Campbell's patients who had been receiving controlled substances from him died from drug-related deaths."
"Some of those patients may not have seen Dr. Campbell for some time before their deaths," Grove wrote.
The Indiana Attorney General's office filed a licensing complaint against Campbell in August, saying he wrote 14,000 prescriptions in 2012, but he only saw 60 to 70 patients during his three-day work week.
Campbell surrendered his Drug Enforcement Permit and Indiana Controlled Substance Registration in May after admitting to using pre-signed prescription pads for two physician assistants and even nurse practitioners to use when he wasn't seeing patients, the attorney general's office said in a news release.
Campbell, 83, came out of retirement in 2007 to serve as staff physician and soon after became the chief medical officer at the health center, which includes clinics in Anderson and Elwood clinic and a school-based clinic in Alexandria.