Telegram & Gazette (Massachusetts)

November 16, 2001 Friday, RT. 9 EAST EDITION

MD’s loss of license extended



LENGTH: 366 words


– A psychiatrist whose license had been revoked won’t be allowed to reapply for it until she can prove she has been drug-free for at least 18 months.
On Wednesday, the state Board of Registration in Medicine placed further conditions for the possible reinstatement of Dr. Josephine A. Hoffman, now of Florida, who worked briefly at Staffier Associates, a psychiatric clinic in Westboro.
The state board alleges that Dr. Hoffman, who is a psychiatrist and neurologist, had practiced medicine while her ability to do so was impaired by drugs and that she prescribed Ritalin after her license had been revoked in March. Dr. Hoffman was licensed to practice medicine in Massachusetts from 1989 until March 14 of this year. She worked at Staffier Associates from last November to February. She was previously licensed in South Carolina and Florida, and has relocated to Florida, according to state records.
Dr. Hoffman, 46, has not been charged criminally in Massachusetts. Last November, she and the state board agreed that she would undergo substance abuse treatment.
On March 8, the board reported that Dr. Hoffman missed a random drug test, and she tested positive for amphetamines on three occasions later that month. Her license was revoked in March, but she was able to reapply for it if she could prove that she recovered from chemical dependency.
Dr. Hoffman was still required by the agreement with the board to undergo random drug testing after her license was revoked. Between April and September, she tested positive for ethanol, hyrodcodone, alcohol and cocaine at random tests. In April she wrote at least two prescriptions for controlled substances though she was not licensed to do, according to state records.
Claudette A. Houle, external relations manager for the state Board of Registration in Medicine, said privacy laws prohibit public dissemination of information of the circumstances behind a doctor’s disciplinary action.
Dr. Hoffman can reapply for her license if she can prove that she has been drug-free for 18 months, if she undergoes a psychiatric exam, and agrees to resume following the terms of a probationary agreement that includes drug testing.