Medical board considers further action against former Mount Carmel physician in patient deaths investigation

The State Medical Board of Ohio said Feb. 13 it intends to decide whether further action is necessary on the suspended license of a former Columbus, Ohio-based Mount Carmel Health System physician accused of ordering potentially fatal painkiller doses for at least 34 near-death patients, according to The Columbus Dispatch.

In a letter to William Husel, MD, the board said it will consider several censure options, up to a permanent revocation, which would invalidate Dr. Husel's current license and leave him unable to get any license in the future.

The letter mentions the deaths of six unnamed patients. Each of these patients received the painkiller fentanyl. Five patients also were given the sedative midazolam called Versed.

The board said the dosages were "inappropriate and excessive" and that Dr. Husel ordered them, administered them or caused them to be administered.

The board suspended Dr. Husel's license Jan. 25. The suspension letter references two other unnamed patients, one who received fentanyl and midazolam and another who received fentanyl with the opioid hydromorphone, known as Dilaudid.

Lawyers representing Dr. Husel in the medical moard matter did not respond to a request for comment from The Dispatch.

Mount Carmel publicly said Jan. 14 that Dr. Husel was fired Dec. 5 for prescribing high painkiller doses.

Health system officials said Dr. Husel overdosed 34 near-death patients from 2015 to 2018, and the doses were in potentially fatal amounts in 28 of those cases.

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