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Oklahoma physician assistant accused of improperly prescribing painkillers, medications

by Andrew Knittle and Jaclyn Cosgrove Modified: March 2, 2013 at 12:13 am •  Published: March 4, 2013
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A 30-year-old woman's intake of highly addictive painkillers went up 4,000 percent after her first visit with longtime Oklahoma physician assistant Michael Hume.

The woman, diagnosed with cervical disease and arthritis despite no testing or supporting documentation, would lose 15 percent of her body weight while under Hume's care.

Hume, licensed in Oklahoma since 1980, now is accused of recklessly prescribing thousands of powerful painkillers and other controlled substances without keeping adequate records or offering any kind of treatment to those under his care.

He is expected to go before the state medical board Thursday for a disciplinary hearing.

Investigators with the Oklahoma State Board of Medical Licensure and Supervision said that Vista Medical Center, the clinic where Hume worked, did not accept insurance and that the facility's owner paid medical staff based on the number of patients seen each day.

A complaint filed Jan. 2 against Hume shows that he continued to prescribe large amounts of painkillers, muscle relaxers and powerful anti-anxiety medications after an initial meeting with medical board investigators in September 2011. The document also details Hume's relationship with 10 other patients.

“After the meeting with (Hume), his prescribing habits, medical documentation and medical care did not change,” the complaint states.

Hume also is accused of rarely ordering drug tests for his patients, who are often asked to do so to prove they are ingesting the pills and not selling them on the street, medical board investigators allege.

He and his supervising physician, Dr. William Martin Valuck, no longer work at the clinic.

Valuck, who served several years in federal prison before coming to Oklahoma, has not had any action taken against him by the state medical board.

Attempts to contact Hume to comment on this story were not successful.

Owner denies allegations

Pat Reynolds, the owner of Vista Medical Center, 3700 S Western Ave., is mentioned in the medical board's complaint against Hume.

“The Vista Medical Center is owned and operated by Pat Reynolds, a non-physician, who compensates Defendant based solely on his production. At the time of the incidents in question, Defendant treated approximately 37 patients per day,” according to the complaint.

Reynolds said that information is not accurate.

“I don't have anything to do with them — they left last October,” Reynolds said. “I'm in the facility and real estate business.”

Reynolds said he did not pay Hume or Valuck and that he did not serve as their supervisor. Reynolds said he did not know how many prescriptions Hume was filling.

“I would think if there was a problem there, the medical board would know or the DEA or the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics would know,” Reynolds said.

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by Andrew Knittle
Investigative Reporter
Andrew Knittle has covered state water issues, tribal concerns and major criminal proceedings during his career as an Oklahoma journalist. He has won reporting awards from the state's Associated Press bureau and prides himself on finding a real...
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by Jaclyn Cosgrove
Medical and Health Reporter
Jaclyn Cosgrove writes about health, public policy and medicine in Oklahoma, among other topics. She is an Oklahoma State University graduate. Jaclyn grew up in the southeast region of the state and enjoys writing about rural Oklahoma. She is...
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