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First Sex, Then Drugs—Warwick Physician Suspended Second Time

Thursday, August 30, 2012

 

A Warwick physician who had his license suspended in the 1990s for having sexual contact with a patient, is now suspended from prescribing controlled substances, after an investigation into his writing improper prescriptions for drugs including Oxycodone, Diazepam, and Adderall.

Six prescriptions, two months, one patient

Stephen Petteruti, DO, was found to have written six separate prescriptions for one family member (using that family member's maiden name which is different from his own), between October 12 and December 12, 2011. According to the RI Department of Health (HEALTH), the prescriptions were for Oxycodone, Hydromorphone, Diazepam, and Zofran.

Board of Pharmacy investigators served a subpoena for medical records for two family members and Dr. Petteruti himself and found no evidence of any medical examination relating to these prescriptions.

Petteruti stated to the Board of Medical Licensure and Discipline in July of 2012 that he did physically evaluate the family member/patient prior to prescribing medication and "he stated that he observed the patient's response to all medications and monitored for any side effects," according to documents from HEALTH. Petteruti also "asserted that the prescriptions 'for a brief period of time was not inappropriate.'"

Petteruti also admitted in July that he prescribed Adderall for another family member on one occasion. He said he was "aware of the family member's full medical history and observed his repines to the prescribed medication."

Sexual contact with patient

In 1997, according to HEALTH's documentation, Petteruti was found guilty of unprofessional conduct for violating RI General Laws for "having sexual contact between a doctor and a patient during the existence of the doctor/patient relationship." Petteruti voluntarily surrendered his license to practice medicine in the state of RI and agreed to certain conditions. His license was reinstated in 1998, according to HEALTH.

Petteruti's license to prescribe controlled substances is suspended until further notice.

 

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