W. Va. WCC Terminates Physician

July 5, 2005

The West Virginia Workers’ Compensation Commission has terminated a Huntington psychiatrist from the program for “providing health care that is medically unreasonable.”

Dr. Deleno H. Webb III was sent a “Notice of Termination” on June 24, informing him that his right to obtain payment for services rendered to injured workers has been “permanently and irrevocably” terminated.

Under West Virginia Code, the Commission may permanently terminate the right of any health care provider to receive payment for services rendered to injured workers.

Earlier this year, the Commission terminated the rights of Michael Kostenko, DO, of Beckley, for abusing the workers’ compensation system by “providing health care that is excessive, medically
unreasonable and unethical.” Kostenko’s appeal to the administrative law judge remains pending.

The action against Webb was taken after the Commission consulted with its Health Care Advisory

In the report presented by HCAP’s chairman, Dr. Edward Doyle, the panel recommended that Webb be “terminated from participation in the program immediately. Because of the danger to patients, we recommend the injured workers receive appropriate evaluation and treatment, which may include inpatient detoxification.”

Webb is reportedly the number one prescriber of Oxycontin (an opioid) to injured workers. The use of opioids is exclusively for the treatment of pain caused by physical conditions. It has no indication for the treatment of psychiatric conditions.

The Commission’s decision to terminate Webb as a physician in the workers’ comp system was reportedly based on the following:

• Webb prescribed opioids for physical conditions without providing physical evaluations and physical functional assessments, in violation of the West Virginia Board of Medicine’s policy regarding controlled substances for the treatment of pain.

In a separate letter, the Commission notified more than 200 of Webb’s current patients that it will no longer pay for services rendered by Webb after July 24. While patients may choose to continue
receiving medical services from Webb, they will be solely responsible for payment of those services.

The Commission is assisting patients with transferring to another heath care provider to manage their workers’ comp-related conditions.

Webb has an office located at 1326 Sixth Ave. in Huntington. He is scheduled to appear at 9:30 a.m. Aug. 11 at the Commission’s headquarters located at 4700 MacCorkle Ave. S.E., Charleston.

At that time, Webb may provide the Commission with evidence to show cause why his right to receive payment from the Workers’ Compensation Commission should not have been terminated.

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