The New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners has adopted a hearing committee’s decision to temporarily suspend the license of North Jersey doctor Kenneth Zahl, accused by the State of repeatedly violating board orders that placed restrictions on his medical and billing practices, Attorney General Zulima Farber and Consumer Affairs Director Kimberly Ricketts reported.
The board issued its decision Wednesday after reviewing the report of the committee, which concluded that Zahl’s continued practice of medicine represents a clear and imminent threat to the public’s health, safety and welfare. The committee conducted a three-day hearing last month on the State’s request for a temporary suspension of Zahl’s license.
Wednesday, Zahl immediately filed an appeal with the New Jersey Supreme Court seeking to stay the board’s decision. The application was denied. The suspension took effect and will remain in effect pending a full hearing before the Office of Administrative Law and further review by the board.
Zahl, an anesthesiologist who maintained practices in Newton, Union, Rockaway, Morristown and Saddle Brook, had his license revoked in 2003, when an administrative law judge reportedly found that he manufactured false and inaccurate patient records; retained duplicate payments from insurance companies for services; and inserted overlapping time entries into records of at least 100 patients.
Following the ALJ’s ruling, the board revoked Zahl’s license and ordered him to pay more than $250,000 in penalties, attorneys fees and costs. Zahl appealed to the Appellate Division, which affirmed the board’s findings, but stayed the revocation pending a further hearing before the board. The Appellate Division’s stay was conditioned upon Dr. Zahl’s satisfaction of reporting requirements imposed by the board and oversight of the financial and billing activities at his medical practice.
The suspension stems from a complaint filed by the State alleging that Zahl failed to comply with the reporting and oversight requirements ordered by the board.
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