Kanawha Circuit Court Reinstates License for McMechen Pain Clini - WBOY - Clarksburg, Morgantown: News, Sports, Weather

Kanawha Circuit Court Reinstates License for McMechen Pain Clinic Doctor

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 About a month after the West Virginia Board of Osteopathic Medicine suspended Dr. Roland F. Chalifoux Jr.'s medical license for alleged unsafe practices at Valley Pain Management in McMechen, Kanawha County Circuit Court Judge Charles E. King reinstated it in the form of a temporary restraining order and injunctive relief.

During a July 25 emergency meeting of the board, the West Virginia Health Commission presented evidence collected by the West Virginia Bureau for Public Health, whose officials said they witnessed non-sterile techniques being used at the Marshall County clinic. Click HERE to read our previous coverage.


Chalifoux requested a hearing, and asked the board to reinstate his license until matters surrounding his suspension could be addressed at a hearing before the board.

According to the Aug. 28 order from Kanawha County Circuit Court, the court “finds that Dr. Chalifoux will be irreparably harmed,” if his license is not reinstated, and would lose his DEA license.

“The court finds that there is little likelihood of harm to the board if an injunction is issued,” the order reads. “The court also finds that there is little likelihood of harm to the bureau if an injunction is issued.”

At the time of the formal allegations, Chalifoux issued a statement denying all allegations against him and the clinic. He was the clinic's only physician. Valley Pain Management opened in 2010.

Both the Ohio Department of Health and the West Virginia Bureau for Public Health urged patients to be tested for hepatitis B, hepatitis C and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) because of accusations that Valley Pain Management re-used needles and syringes to administer pain medications and saline solutions as well as using the same pain medication vial for multiple patients.

Click HERE to read our previous coverage.

The West Virginia Bureau for Public Health received an Oct. 24, 2013 complaint that one of Chalifoux's patients was diagnosed with bacterial meningitis, which trigged an investigation by the bureau.

The board's July 25, 2013 order called for an immediate suspension of Chalifoux's license, and he was notified his medical malpractice insurance policy would be terminated Aug. 31, 2014. He also was notified he would be required to spend $45,000 as a nonrefundable premium to purchase coveage at the expiration of his current policy. Chalifoux also terminated the jobs of five employees.

The Aug. 28 order points out that about nine months have passed since the first site inspection of the clinic and Chalifoux's suspension and about seven months have passed between the second site inspection and his suspension.

“The court finds that the passage of this amount of time suggests that there is no immediate harm posed to the public and there is no basis upon which there can be any likelihood of harm to the board, the bureau or the public if an injunction is issued,” the Aug. 28 order reads. “The court finds that the plaintiff is likely to succeed on the merits.”

The order also points out there have been no additional cases of meningitis discovered or reported by the bureau to the board, but there is a public interest in allowing Chalifoux's patients to seek and receive treatment from him. 

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