In return for not revoking his license, Oceanside based doctor, Glenn Balfour agreed to a four year probation period which requires counseling and puts limitations on his medical practice.
The agreement is called a “stipulated settlement and disciplinary order.” According to the agreement, he can’t “order, prescribe, dispense, administer, furnish or possess drugs” that fall under schedule one and two of the California Uniform Controlled Substances Act. This includes marijuana, opiates, barbiturates, and methamphetamine.
In addition, he is required to keep good records on the drugs he does prescribe.
The three people detailed in the report, identified by their initials, were all patients of Balfour. Their prescriptions, signed by the doctor, are detailed in depth in the Medical Board of California’s accusation.
According to the documents, one patient was treated for migraines and lower back pain and she repeatedly “denied any history of trauma to her back.” A nerve study conducted on the patient showed the patient was normal, according to the accusation. Nevertheless, according to the documents, on the same date of her nerve study, the doctor prescribed 120 tablets of Dilaudid and 120 tablets of Percocet.
In an eight month period, another patient, according to the accusation, was prescribed 4,250 Norco tablets, a combination of a narcotic and a mild pain killer. The doctor committed “gross negligence” in the patient’s care, according to the medical board.
After reviewing Balfour’s case, Jamie Court, a consumer advocate with Consumer Watchdog said the Medical Board’s punishment sends the wrong message to other doctors who are overprescribing drugs.
“This is the poster child for how the medical board slaps doctors on the wrist when they should be taking away their prescribing pens permanently,” he said. “Drug dealers do time for selling opioids. Doctors who overprescribe not needed medications are given too many second chances in this state.”
In an email, a spokesperson with the Medical Board, Jennifer Simoes, told NBC 7 Investigates, the “Medical Board's primary mission is consumer protection and the Medical Board takes this mission very seriously."
NBC 7 Investigates contacted Balfour and his attorney. His attorney said his client does not want to comment on the accusation.
NBC 7 Investigates is reporting on medical professionals accused by the public and the California Medical Board of wrongdoing in order to bring information to the public and increase transparency of medical practices in the San Diego region. Currently, this information is reported by the Medical Board on its website.