Medical-marijuana doctor suspended

March 04, 2004

The Associated Press, Statesman Journal

PORTLAND — A doctor who signed nearly half of the medical-marijuana cards in Oregon was suspended Thursday from practicing medicine.

Dr. Phillip Leveque, 81, an osteopathic doctor, said Thursday that he has singed more than 4,000 cards for people with crippling disorders who want to smoke marijuana to alleviate pain.
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He had two Portland offices and traveled frequently along Interstate 5 to mass meetings with patients seeking the cards.

Leveque had been under scrutiny since 2002, when the Oregon Board of Medical Examiners suspended his license for 90 days and fined him $5,000 for signing cards without first seeing patients face-to-face.

At the time, Leveque agreed to more thoroughly evaluate patients before signing the cards.

The Oregon Board of Medical Examiners on Thursday issued a statement saying that Leveque had not followed through on that agreement.

Several Oregon certified physicians hired by the board as consultants raised concerns about Leveque’s practices, said Kathleen Haley, executive director of the board.

The consultants found that he approved cards for patients with psychiatric disorders and prior histories of drug addition for whom marijuana was not appropriate, Haley said.

Also, Leveque recommended smoking pot for conditions that could not benefit from the drug, Haley said.

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