New Orleans physician pleads guilty to illegal prescribing, faces 10-year prison sentence

A New Orleans-based physician pled guilty Thursday to federal charges of money laundering and illegally dispensing controlled substances, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office of Eastern District of Louisiana.

Here are seven things to know.

1. Frederick Floyd, DO, was arrested July 7 on federal drug charges related to evidence he illegally prescribed millions of doses of oxycodone, fentanyl and other controlled substances while serving as the lone physician at two New Orleans clinics, according to The Times-Picayune.

2. Dr. Floyd began working at New Orleans-based Bullard Medical Center in June 2013. By 2014, the Drug Enforcement Administration launched an investigation into the clinic as prescribing practices appeared to be "outside the scope of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose," according to court records cited by The Times-Picayune.

3. In March 2016, Dr. Floyd opened New Orleans-based St. Ignatius of Loyola Health Clinic where he also allegedly issued illegal prescriptions for controlled substances.

4. Dr. Floyd allegedly saw 50 to 70 patients a day, with some traveling in from out of state. Some patients were provided transportation assistance.

5. Court documents detail about 15 visits made by undercover DEA sources acting as patients. The sources would wait several hours before having their blood pressure and weight checked, then, after another several hours, they would see Dr. Floyd. The physician would allegedly not ask these sources about their pain, discuss non-medical matters and then write them prescriptions for drugs like Percocet and Roxicodone. On average, these sources would pay $275 to $300 in cash during each visit, according to court documents cited by The Times-Picayune.

6. Between Jan. 1, 2015 and Aug. 31, 2016, Dr. Floyd allegedly issued prescriptions for more than 4.8 million doses of controlled substances, according to court documents. Per the plea arrangement, the government and Dr. Floyd agree that at least half of the 4.8 million doses were prescribed without legitimate medical cause.

7. Dr. Floyd has been detained since his July 12 hearing. If the court accepts the plea agreement, Dr. Floyd will face a mandatory sentence of 10 years in prison and will be subject to a $1.25 million fine. Sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 28.

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