Fired Mount Carmel doctor William Husel has requested a hearing before the State Medical Board of Ohio, to appeal the suspension of his medical license. The hearing’s date has yet to be determined.
The State Medical Board temporarily suspended Husel’s medical license on January 25, following Mount Carmel’s report that the doctor ordered “excessive” doses of pain medication for dozens of patients. The hospital now says at least 35 patients were affected by Husel's actions.
In mid-February, the board issued Husel a citation, saying they were working to determine if they should permanently revoke his license. The citation, which was obtained by WOSU, discusses six cases in which Husel ordered 1,000 micrograms or more of the pain medication fentanyl.
The board stated that Husel’s acts constitute a “departure from, or the failure to conform to, minimal standards of care of similar practitioners.”
All 35 patients identified by the hospital died after receiving the painkiller doses. The hospital recently reported that there may have been opportunities for conditions of five of those patients to improve.
Husel could face civil penalties of up to $20,000, in addition to other disciplinary actions.
Husel had 30 days from the date his license was suspended to request a hearing. At the hearing, Husel is allowed to present evidence and examine witnesses appearing both for an against him.
Husel’s legal representation from Graff and McGovern submitted documents to the medical board February 22, about a week after the board sent the citation.
One month earlier, the board said Husel appeared for a half-hour meeting about his conduct, but asserted his "Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination to virtually all questions." Among the questions Husel declined to answer were inquiries about his understanding of fentanyl and if he administered drugs with the purpose of ending his patients' lives.
Announcing their decision to temporarily suspend Husel’s license just days later, a Medical Board spokesperson said the action was “based on allegations of his failure to meet acceptable standards regarding the selection of drugs, violations of the minimal standards of care and failing to cooperate in a board’s investigation related to the doctor’s prescribing of fentanyl and midazolam to patients under his care at Mt. Carmel Health Systems."
Husel worked as an anesthesiologist and ICU doctor at Mount Carmel from 2013 until 2018. The hospital system fired Husel on Dec. 5, 2018.
Since Husel's firing was announced in January, 19 wrongful death lawsuits have been filed by the families of his patients.
The Franklin County Prosecutor's office is currently investigating the case.
If you are a Mount Carmel staffer who has information to share, or you believe your loved one or family member was impacted by this case, contact WOSU at firstname.lastname@example.org.