State medical regulators have filed a formal complaint
against Molalla osteopath Dr. Phillip Leveque for
"repeated negligence" in authorizing medical marijuana
cards for hundreds of patients he never saw.


The Board of Medical Examiners charged that Leveque
signed applications "without examining the patient,
conducting medical tests, maintaining an adequate
medical chart, reviewing possible contraindications or
conferring with other medical care providers."

Leveque, 78, said Wednesday through his attorney that
he has requested a hearing to contest the charges. The
board regulates medical practice and investigates
complaints against doctors in Oregon.

Leveque has signed far more medical marijuana
applications than any other doctor in Oregon. He said
Wednesday that he has signed about 1,800 applications
during the past two years.

Leveque said the board was using him as an example to
deter physicians from authorizing the use of medical
marijuana. "They're putting every doctor in Oregon on
notice that if you even come close to what Leveque is
doing, you're in trouble," he said.

"When you're a point man, you get shot at," Leveque
said. "And I'm being shot at."

The board last month ordered Leveque to undergo a
psychological and physical examination to make sure he
is fully capable of doing his job. Leveque had both
examinations this month.

The board could fine Leveque, reprimand him or revoke
or suspend his license -- or impose a combination of
those penalties. Its final decision depends on the
results of Leveque's medical checkups and the hearing.

Under Oregon's Medical Marijuana Act, residents can
apply for a card allowing them to grow and use
marijuana, or cannabis, for medical purposes. A doctor
must verify that the patient has a "debilitating
medical condition" such as cancer, AIDS or severe
pain.

The complaint against Leveque cites two unnamed
patients.

One, designated Patient A, is a 14-year-old girl with
a history of sinus pain, depression and marijuana use.
The complaint charges that Leveque signed her
application for marijuana "without ever examining or
speaking with this patient."

The other, Patient B, applied for a medical marijuana
card in August 2000. Leveque stated on the application
that the patient "has a poorly diagnosed condition
which causes nausea, vomitting (sic) and seizures.
Cannabis helps." The board's complaint charges that
Leveque relied on a phone call and a letter from the
patient and did not meet him.

In addition, the complaint charges that Leveque had
overlooked a letter from the patient's psychiatrist
explaining that the patient had been diagnosed with
schizoaffective disorder, took many medications and
had a history of abusing "street" drugs, including
LSD, amphetamines and marijuana.

Leveque said he didn't examine Patient B because the
man didn't have a driver's license and couldn't easily
get to his clinic.

You can reach Don Colburn at 503-294-5124 or by e-mail
at doncolburn@news.oregonian.com.


Source: The Oregonian (Portland)
Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/
Address: 1320 SW Broadway, Portland, OR 97201
Contact: letters@news.oregonian.com
Copyright: 2002 The Oregonian
Fax: 503-294-4193
Pubdate: Thursday, Feb. 21, 2002
Page: B1 & B6
Byline: Don Colburn
Title: Regulators cite doctor in medical pot cases