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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Cape Cod doctor's license suspended

By Liz Kowalczyk, Globe Staff

The Board of Registration in Medicine today temporarily suspended the medical license of Hyannis physician Dr. Rahul Chaturvedi, saying he poses a serious and immediate threat to public health, safety and welfare.

The board alleges that Chaturvedi improperly prescribed narcotics, failed to properly create and store patients' medical records, and provided poor care for some patients, including not performing physical exams and following up on abnormal laboratory results.

For example, one 36-year-old woman saw the physician in October 2006 for depression and back pain. Without a physical exam, the board alleges, Chaturvedi prescribed antidepressants. He then failed to evaluate her response to the medication during her next visit, and did not address her four elevated blood pressure readings in one month.

The board also alleges that the doctor told employees to perform medical tasks they were not qualified to perform. For example, he had one employee, who was a personal trainer, perform a range of motion test on a patient and administer a shot to another patient. He was not a licensed physical therapist, and was not qualified to give shots, the board said.

Chaturvedi has seven days to appeal the emergency suspension to the state Division of Administrative Law Appeals.

He practices internal medicine and has been licensed to practice medicine in Massachusetts since 1992. His wife, Dr. Neena Chaturvedi, who had practiced with him, previously entered a voluntary agreement with the board not to practice medicine.

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