A Denton Doctor faces prison after admitting to writing hundreds of thousands of illegal opioid prescriptions.
Dr. Stanley Charles Evans, 63, pleaded guilty to federal charges of “conspiracy to distribute and dispense controlled substances and health care fraud” in the Eastern District of Texas, U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston announced on Monday.
Prosecutors said Evans wrote illegal prescriptions for approximately 370,000 doses of hydrocodone, often without seeing the patients. Information presented in court showed Evans began writing the illegal prescriptions in 2017.
An investigation began after it was reported that Evans was pre-signing opioid prescriptions for patients who had exhibited drug-seeking behavior. The investigation revealed patients were repeatedly given the most potent prescription for hydrocodone without being thoroughly examined or providing documentation regarding their “pain.”
Evans was only in the office about half the time he claimed, and prescriptions for Schedule II opioids were written even while he was on vacation out of the country.
Additionally, four nurse practitioners at Family Healthcare Denton saw up to 30 patients daily. Rather than receiving a salary, nurses were paid based on how much they billed. They also billed Medicare and Tricare using Evans’ medical identification number, resulting in higher reimbursements from Medicare than if it were recorded the patient had seen a nurse practitioner.
“Evans gives other physicians a bad name,” Featherston said, “Sworn to do no harm, Evans failed by illegally prescribing narcotics that harmed many people.”
“More people die by opioid drug abuse than by vehicle- and gun-related deaths combined in the U.S. today,” he continued. “This is a big problem, and those who are supposed to heal the sick, but choose to become illegal drug dealers, will be investigated and prosecuted.”
Evans’ sentence will be determined by the court, but he faces up to 20 years, the maximum statutory sentence prescribed by Congress.
A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a pre-sentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.
Offering a warning for the benefit of others, Evans made a Facebook post in August 2021 titled, “Warning Medical Professionals.” He admitted he was “under investigation by the DEA” and advised fellow practitioners not to pre-sign prescriptions for Schedule II drugs.
“My practice of pre-signing C2 scrips got me into serious trouble,” he said. “Even though I gave those to appropriate patients, I still broke the law. Don’t be any part of inappropriate distribution of controlled meds.”
In a later post, Evans wrote, “My reason to pre-sign C2’s was for convenience of my patients and convenience for myself.”
“I hurt myself and others as well,” he continued. “I am focusing on eliminating unrighteous motives, situational opportunities and unethical behavior.”
For more Dallas hospital-related news, see how Dallas County Anesthesiologist Dr. Raynaldo Ortiz Jr, was arrested for tainting IV bags.