Williamsburg doctor's license restricted after alleged over-prescribing

By: Angela Sparkman Email
By: Angela Sparkman Email

A doctor in Whitley County is no longer allowed to practice in Williamsburg after the Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure says he was over-prescribing pain pills that led to overdose deaths.

Dr. Louis Wulfekuhler agreed to the indefinite restriction and left the state.

He worked at Ho's Physician Services. Williamsburg Police say the office was always full with 15 to 20 patients at a time.

"One of the red flags was I started seeing vehicles from three to four counties away," said Wayne Bird, Williamsburg Police Chief.

The police chief says citizens were complaining of loved ones getting too many pain pills at the doctor's office. Bird says the coroner said overdose victims had pills from Dr. Louis Wulfekuhler, so they started surveillance and found people in the parking lot under the influence.

"One man had 120 hydrocodone prescribed, that's a lot of hydrocodone prescribed to one patient, and I don't know the medical background we're dealing with, but most people didn't appear to be in any chronic pain at all. They were just high," said Bird.

The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure investigated and decided the doctor was over-prescribing.

The report states Dr. Wulfekuhler did not use KASPER to determine whether or not the patient should receive painkillers. The report states he also did not use urine drug screens to see if patients were abusing the pills or under the influence.

Dr. Wulfekuhler agreed to an indefinite restriction of his license. Under the agreement, he cannot diagnose or treat patients in Kentucky.

"There's no excuse for it. Doctors take an oath to protect lives and save lives, not to kill people, and that's what's going on," said Karen Kelly with Operation UNITE.

In state records, Dr. Wulfekuhler's attorney says he used to be an oncologist and work with cancer patients. The attorney says Dr. Wulfekuhler did not realize patients at Ho Physician Services were seeking painkillers to abuse.

"I think that's a phony excuse. That's a lie. I think if you're prescribing to people with addiction you're going to know it," Kelly said.

Dr. Wulfekuhler has moved to Michigan.

If Wulfekuhler violates the agreed order of indefinite restriction, his license will be suspended.

If the doctor wants to practice medicine anywhere in Kentucky again, he will have to seek permission from the medical licensure panel.

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