A California doctor, Dr. Hsui-Ying “Lisa” Tseng, faces 24 felony counts including second degree murder in the prescription drug overdose deaths of three young men.
According to the charging papers, Tseng provided drug seekers with narcotics such as Xanax, oxycodone, methadone, and Soma and she wrote more than 27,000 prescriptions over three years.
Prosecutors said that 12 people who were provided drugs by Tseng died of overdoses but they only charged her for the deaths of the three men’s who deaths were solely attributed to the narcotics she supplied.
Drug overdose death rates in the U.S. have more been soaring since the 1990. In 2008 alone, more than 36,000 individuals died due to drug overdoses and most of the deaths were from prescription drugs. In fact, prescription drug overdose has eclipsed car accidents as the leading cause of accidental death.
100 people die from drug overdoes every day in the United States
Prescription Drug Overdoses in Washington State
Prescription drug abuse and overdoses are an epidemic in Washington state. More people die every year from prescription drug abuse than combined deaths caused by meth, cocaine and heroin combined.
The state plays a role in creating laws which prevents “pill mills” or so-called pain clinics that operate much like Tseng’s clinic. Washington State’s initiatives seeks to control how doctors use painkillers and when doctors should refer patients to pain specialists.
The Washington legislature enacted a law (RCW 70.225) which provides for a Prescription Monitoring Program. In 2012, the law was extended to include veterinarians.
When is a Doctor Liable in a Prescription Drug Overdose Death?
It is a doctor’s duty to prescribe the appropriate dosage of medication for their patients based on many factors including possible drug interactions with other medicines the patient is taking. Unfortunately, some physicians do not clearly assess a patient’s medical needs and if a doctor prescribes a drug without properly assessing a patient’s needs and without properly counseling the patient, the physician may be liable for wrongful death or medical malpractice if the patient overdoses.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney if You’ve Been Affected by Pharmaceutical Malpractice
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or a loved one has fallen victim to wrongful death as a result of pharmaceutical malpractice, you should contact The Farber Law Group, a personal injury law firm with 30 years experience in handling wrongful death and medical malpractice cases. We will work hard to make sure your case is handled properly so that you may recover the maximum compensation.
Source: Los Angeles Times