Sacked Whangarei doctor used methamphetamine and cannabis

By December 14, 2017 Recent News

NZ Herald 14 December 2017
Family First Comment: No connection between P and dope? Yeah right!

A Northland doctor who was justifiably sacked for prescribing controlled drugs to her partner was a recreational user of methamphetamine and cannabis, it has been revealed.

Dr Lynda Marie Emmerson has lost an appeal in the High Court against the decision of the Medical Council’s Professional Conduct Committee (PCC) that recommended her registration be cancelled.

The Health Practitioners’ Disciplinary Tribunal subsequently cancelled her registration.

Dr Emmerson was working at Whangarei Hospital’s Tumanako mental health unit as a psychiatric registrar when she prescribed controlled drugs— including morphine, diazepam, dihydrocodeine tartrate, amoxicillin and tramadol— to her partner, who was not a patient in the unit.She also wrote prescriptions for her partner’s mother and a work colleague.

Her employer, the Northland District Health Board, complained to the council about her conduct and the matter was referred by the council to the PCC.

The DHB recorded nursing staff as saying Dr Emmerson had told them she would, if tested, fail a urine test for abuse of different substances.

The PCC engaged another doctor to establish if Dr Emmerson had a substance-related disorder or a mental health issue.