NORMAN J CLEMENT RPH., DDS, NORMAN L.CLEMENT PHARM-TECH, MALACHI F. MACKANDAL PHARMD, IN THE SPIRIT OF WALTER R. CLEMENT BS., MS., MBA., BELINDA BROWN-PARKER, IN THE SPIRIT OF JOSEPH SOLVO ESQ., INC.T. SPIRIT OF REV. C.T. VIVIAN, JELANI ZIMBABWE CLEMENT, BS., MBA., IN THE SPIRIT OF THE HON. PATRICE LUMUMBA, IN THE SPIRIT OF ERLIN CLEMENT SR., WALTER F. WRENN III., MD., JULIE KILLINGWORTH, LESLY POMPY MD., CLINTON BATTLE, JR., CHRISTOPHER RUSSO, MD., NANCY SEEFELDT, WILLIE GUINYARD BS., JOSEPH WEBSTER MD., MBA, BEVERLY C. PRINCE MD., FACS., NEIL ARNAND, MD., IN THE SPIRIT OF GIOVAN MBEKI, RICHARD KAUL, MD., LEROY BAYLOR, JAY K. JOSHI MD., MBA, ADRIENNE EDMUNDSON, ESTER HYATT PH.D., WALTER L. SMITH BS., IN THE SPIRIT OF BRAHM FISHER ESQ., MICHELE ALEXANDER MD., CUDJOE WILDING BS, MARTIN NJOKU, BS., RPH., IN THE SPIRIT OF DEBRA LYNN SHEPHERD, BERES E. MUSCHETT, STRATEGIC ADVISORS
Judge sides with pain physician, orders CVS to resume filling his scripts
Laura Dyrda – Tuesday, August 17th, 2021
Crestview Hills, Ky.-based Kendall Hansen, MD, won a temporary restraining order against CVS Pharmacy, which stopped filling prescriptions for his patients earlier this year.
Dr. Hansen, an interventional pain physician who prescribes controlled substances as part of his treatment regimens for some patients, was granted a temporary restraining order against CVS Pharmacy Aug. 11. The company is now required to fill prescriptions written by Dr. Hansen.
In June, CVS contacted Dr. Hansen with questions about his prescribing practices but did not express concerns about whether Dr. Hansen’s prescriptions were medically necessary. CVS then sent a letter to Dr. Hansen July 28 to say pharmacists in northern Kentucky would stop filling prescriptions for his patients.
Dr. Hansen sued CVS on Aug. 4, arguing the company’s refusal to fill his prescriptions would cost him patients and imply the prescriptions he wrote in the past were illegitimate or improper. Dr. Hansen said he has more than 250 patients who fill prescriptions at CVS locations.
In issuing the restraining order, U.S. District Judge William Bartelsman wrote Dr. Hansen was likely to succeed in his lawsuit alleging CVS Pharmacy interfered with his patient relationships by not filling prescriptions without evidence that Dr. Hansen had broken the law.
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Federal agents accuse Hansen of getting other doctors to prescribe him high doses of opioids. Those agents claim Hansen would write prescriptions for employees and instruct them to bring him the pills.
The indictment against Hansen lists 480 tramadol doses and 30 phentermine doses.
In a separate filing, federal agents accuse Fletcher of writing oxycodone hydrochloride prescriptions that were not for legitimate medical use.
Each doctor had federal arraignments Dec. 1 in which they pleaded not guilty. Hansen wrote a statement to WCPO 9 saying the federal court decided he could continue to prescribe controlled medications pending the result of his case.
“We are worried about public safety and welfare if over 100 patients a day are forced to go into withdrawal and then feel the full effect of their pain and lose the ability to function because of their medically necessary pain diagnosis,” Hansen said in the statement. “We have over 3,000 patients, so this could result in a medical emergency and national news.”
Hansen said there are a few other local pain practices, but not enough to take on all of their patients. Hansen says Interventional Pain Specialists has been under investigation for about three years, and no charges have been filed against the business.
Outside the practice, one of Hansen’s patients, Jacqueline Fritsch, said, “When I came here, I could hardly walk, and that man has helped me tremendously. I can walk now.”
One of Fletcher’s patients, Jackie Carter, cried as she described the pain she is enduring since the federal indictment.
“On top of all the pain, I’m having withdrawal symptoms,” said Carter. “This is not right. There’s people that’s in extreme pain, myself included, and what he’s done is just not acceptable.”
Carter said she has had trouble finding other care.
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“I have tried, but I have been told by eight doctors this morning doctor’s offices say they will not touch Dr. Fletcher’s patients. They will not see them. They said to check with your primary physician,” said Carter.
She said her primary doctor does not prescribe controlled substances, an issue Hansen raised in his statement.
“IPS and the Specialty of Pain Management was asked to increase prescribing of opioids after primary care physicians were told to limit chronic prescribing,” Hansen said. “I have been in discussions with heads of St. Elizabeth Hospitals asking for help during our recent issue.”
Hansen filed a complaint in federal court in August against CVS Pharmacy. In it, he accuses pharmacists of refusing to fill his patients’ prescriptions.
WCPO 9 is still waiting for a response from Fletcher.
He faces three counts of Distribution of a Controlled Substance. Hansen faces one count of Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substance and two counts of Distribution of a Controlled Substance.
They are each scheduled to be back in court for pretrial conferences Jan. 26.
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