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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Thursday, October 8, 2009

Physician on Kauai loses license in 'dial-a-doc' case

Advertiser Staff

The state Medical Board has revoked the license of a Kaua'i physician who wrote prescriptions for patients without necessary exams.

Kaua'i physician Dr. Harold Spear III also was fined $5,000, according to the order released today. The order had an Aug. 14 effective date.

Spear in July pleaded guilty to five federal criminal charges related to illegal narcotics prescriptions he wrote in what prosecutors called a "dial-a-doc" business.

In a plea agreement reached with the U.S. attorney's office, Spear pleaded guilty to four counts of a multicount indictment returned against him here last year and to one criminal charge pending against him in federal court in Alabama.

Spear, 57, operated the Hanapepe Clinic on the Garden Isle.

He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, although his punishment is expected to be considerably less, given his lack of a prior criminal record and his agreement to enter a guilty plea.

Prosecutors alleged that Spear wrote prescriptions for controlled substances methadone and hydrocodone without meeting patients personally or conducting necessary medical examinations of them.

The Medical Board also revoked the license of Dr. William Johns; put Dr. David Tolier on probation for three years and fined him $2,000; put Dr. Steve P. Yu on probation for 1 year and fined him $5,000; put Jeffrey J.K. Lee on probation for one year and fined him $1,000; and accepted the voluntary license surrender of Dr. John Iskandar.