$244,000 Awarded To Woman Over Multiple Methadone Overdoses

$244,000 Awarded To Woman Over Multiple Methadone OverdosesA Maine doctor who was reportedly known for prescribing controversial doses of methadone for recovering addicts has been ordered to pay $244,000 to a patient who overdosed multiple times on the drug.

Dr. Steven Keefe was accused of allowing Dr. Marc Shinderman, the founder of the CAP Quality Care clinic, to use his credentials to prescribe methadone, as Shinderman was not licensed to practice medicine in Maine, according to the Portland Press Herald. Shinderman was reportedly known for his belief that some patients require high dosages of methadone to wean them off their drug habits.

Sharon Pratt, the plaintiff in the medical malpractice lawsuit and a former painkiller addict, allegedly became a patient at CAP Quality Care in 2001 because she heard she would be prescribed whatever she wanted by Shinderman, who received pre-signed prescription sheets from the defendant by Keefe's own admission. Pratt suffered from multiple overdoses of the drug, prescribed to her by Shinderman using the defendant's medical credentials, and sustained a head injury and suffered two car accidents, allegedly because of the high dosages.

The court ruled that Keefe had breached standards of medical care, for which Pratt was reportedly awarded a $244,000 judgment. Shinderman was convicted in 2006 of prescription fraud.

According to the National Institutes of Health, methadone is prescribed to opiate addicts who are seeking help for their addiction through a formal treatment program.