News

Doctor pleads not guilty in connection with death of San Ramon student

Dr. Hsui-Ying "Lisa" Tseng charged with 3 counts of second-degree murder

A Southern California doctor pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder Friday after several of her patients, including a Cal High grad, died from prescription drug overdoses.

Dr. Hsui-Ying "Lisa" Tseng, 42, is charged with three counts of second-degree murder and is accused of prescribing highly addictive drugs such as OxyCotin and Xanax after hasty examinations and minimum questions. She is the first doctor accused of murder by the Los Angeles County district attorney's office over the prescribing of drugs, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Tseng has supposedly been under investigation by the state Medical Board and DEA since 2008, when a pharmacy reported problems with her prescriptions; the doctor is thought to have written 25 prescriptions a day for three years. There was testimony of nearly a dozen patients who died of overdoses, though only three were charged by prosecutors as solely cased by Tseng's prescriptions.

Joey Rovero, a 21-year-old Arizona State University student who died from a prescription drug overdose on Dec. 18, 2009, was prescribed 90 30-mg. strength Oxycodone, 90 Soma and 30 Xanax by Tseng. The Cal High alum was supposed to take one Xanax, three Soma and three Oxycodone every day, his mother, April, told the Express.

"She continued to prescribe these narcotics in high doses even after she was told something was terribly wrong and young men were overdosing and dying," Los Angeles Superior Court Judge said in June.

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According to the Washington Post, Villar de Longoria cited testimony about one man who received an opiate prescription, went to the restroom in Tseng's office and overdosed, requiring medical attention. More than 40 witnesses testified during a three-week preliminary hearing, including law enforcement, Tseng's staff and family of patients.

Rowland Heights-based Tseng is accused of writing more than 27,000 prescriptions over a three-year period and pleaded not guilty to 24 felony counts. If convicted, she could serve 45 years to life in connection with the deaths of Rovero, 29-year-old Vu Nguyen and 25-year-old Steven Ogle.

The judge denied a defense request to have Tseng's bail lowered from $3 million to $1 million. She has been in custody since her arrest in March.

"Doctors in general need to be better trained in how to safely and responsibly prescribe addictive and dangerous narcotics, especially those used to manage pain and anxiety, as they are among the ones most abused," said April Rovero, who founded the National Coalition Against Prescription Drug Abuse after her son's death.

The DEA suspended Tseng's license to write prescriptions in 2010 and the Osteopathic Medical Board of California said Tseng voluntarily surrendered her medical license. She will reappear in court on July 10.

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Doctor pleads not guilty in connection with death of San Ramon student

Dr. Hsui-Ying "Lisa" Tseng charged with 3 counts of second-degree murder

by /

Uploaded: Fri, Sep 28, 2012, 3:59 pm
Updated: Sun, Sep 30, 2012, 7:55 pm

A Southern California doctor pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder Friday after several of her patients, including a Cal High grad, died from prescription drug overdoses.

Dr. Hsui-Ying "Lisa" Tseng, 42, is charged with three counts of second-degree murder and is accused of prescribing highly addictive drugs such as OxyCotin and Xanax after hasty examinations and minimum questions. She is the first doctor accused of murder by the Los Angeles County district attorney's office over the prescribing of drugs, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Tseng has supposedly been under investigation by the state Medical Board and DEA since 2008, when a pharmacy reported problems with her prescriptions; the doctor is thought to have written 25 prescriptions a day for three years. There was testimony of nearly a dozen patients who died of overdoses, though only three were charged by prosecutors as solely cased by Tseng's prescriptions.

Joey Rovero, a 21-year-old Arizona State University student who died from a prescription drug overdose on Dec. 18, 2009, was prescribed 90 30-mg. strength Oxycodone, 90 Soma and 30 Xanax by Tseng. The Cal High alum was supposed to take one Xanax, three Soma and three Oxycodone every day, his mother, April, told the Express.

"She continued to prescribe these narcotics in high doses even after she was told something was terribly wrong and young men were overdosing and dying," Los Angeles Superior Court Judge said in June.

According to the Washington Post, Villar de Longoria cited testimony about one man who received an opiate prescription, went to the restroom in Tseng's office and overdosed, requiring medical attention. More than 40 witnesses testified during a three-week preliminary hearing, including law enforcement, Tseng's staff and family of patients.

Rowland Heights-based Tseng is accused of writing more than 27,000 prescriptions over a three-year period and pleaded not guilty to 24 felony counts. If convicted, she could serve 45 years to life in connection with the deaths of Rovero, 29-year-old Vu Nguyen and 25-year-old Steven Ogle.

The judge denied a defense request to have Tseng's bail lowered from $3 million to $1 million. She has been in custody since her arrest in March.

"Doctors in general need to be better trained in how to safely and responsibly prescribe addictive and dangerous narcotics, especially those used to manage pain and anxiety, as they are among the ones most abused," said April Rovero, who founded the National Coalition Against Prescription Drug Abuse after her son's death.

The DEA suspended Tseng's license to write prescriptions in 2010 and the Osteopathic Medical Board of California said Tseng voluntarily surrendered her medical license. She will reappear in court on July 10.

Comments

Tina
Danville
on Oct 1, 2012 at 11:09 am
Tina, Danville
on Oct 1, 2012 at 11:09 am

This is not surprising.....currently the "great" Stanford University Med school takes in a number of completely unqualified "resident training MDs" sticking them at Valley Santa Clara (horrid ratings). We know one who nailed a 20% on the MCAT yet got into a med school ahead of qualified non-minority applicants. She also nailed D's in sciences yet she brags she is now under STANFORD. They take the med board exam in teensy tiny pieces after tutors teach to each tiny piece. See all the "special programs" only for certain minorities at medical schools. Then hide.


Cathy K
Blackhawk
on Oct 1, 2012 at 12:33 pm
Cathy K, Blackhawk
on Oct 1, 2012 at 12:33 pm

I hope she rots in jail. Ironically the Doctor is also a mother. And she did this all for money. I know the San Ramon family affected by this tragedy. I commend their diligent effort in pursuit of justice for the loss of thier son and for starting their organization National Coalition Against Prescription Drug Abuse (NCAPDA). They have put a spotlight on this terrible epidemic affecting our country and helping to save lives.


LOUISE
Danville
on Oct 2, 2012 at 8:30 am
LOUISE, Danville
on Oct 2, 2012 at 8:30 am

Doctors will be reimbursed at a far lower rate then they are now under Obamacare. So you think medical care will get better? You are very mistaken. But don't take my opinion or many others, just wait until it happens, or you can read the high points of the Affordable Healthcare Act if you really want to be informed. Yes, it's affordable all right. Affordable for the federal government cause they will have a government panel deciding who gets care and when. Right now doctors are limited to how much time they spend with each patient due to increased patient loads and less money but it's not that bad yet. As the population grows and more are covered under the government plan, it will get worse.


Andrea
Blackhawk
on Oct 2, 2012 at 10:30 am
Andrea, Blackhawk
on Oct 2, 2012 at 10:30 am

Giant new taxes coming to fund Obama"care". Older people will be denied care thus forcing them tO become "shovel"/ coffin ready before their time. Why did congress exempt themselves from this boondoggle?
"Control of healthcare is the first step to socialism"----Lenin


Bill
Danville
on Oct 3, 2012 at 6:33 am
Bill, Danville
on Oct 3, 2012 at 6:33 am

Let the misinformation campaign against healthcare begin! First the reimbursement rate under "Obamacare" will not go down as it is already abysmally low thanks to Obama predecessors. As it currently stands there are hardly any MD's that will accept Medical and Medicare isn't much better. The only real and ethical thing to have is some form of national health care. As it stands now it is already a two tiered system with those that have receive quality but very expensive care and those that need care can't afford it. Too many working families have annual deductibles up to $5000 and therefore this makes care unaffordable. Obamacare isn't perfect, but it is at least a move in the right direction. I know those that hate Obama won't support anything he tries to do no matter how much it helps seniors or those on fixed incomes. The hypocrisy and lack of compassion of those on the far right is simply amazing.


Frances
Danville
on Oct 3, 2012 at 10:02 pm
Frances, Danville
on Oct 3, 2012 at 10:02 pm

Bill, obviously you are not an "elder" person because if you were you would be concerned that Obamacare's "panel" might decide not to treat a future condition you may have and you will be sent off to die....like a sick dog! Doctors will be penalized severely if they do not abide by the panel's decision. First offense is a fine and after that it could be imprisonment. Many doctors are leaving the profession and it's no wonder!! Doesn't this sound a bit "communistic" to you? It sure does to me! We are losing our freedoms! This government is immoral! Obama's healthcare plan was designed by Ezekiel Emanuel, MD! Sound familiar? Yes, Rhalm Emanuel's brother! It was designed on the Lives Scale System. Picture an arc with newborns at one end and the elderly on the other. If there is medical rationing those are the two groups who will get overlooked and those at the top of the arc will get the best healthcare! Don't believe me? Check out the Lancet Journals!


Frances
Danville
on Oct 3, 2012 at 10:09 pm
Frances, Danville
on Oct 3, 2012 at 10:09 pm

By the way: Obama didn't need to overhaul our healthcare system. He could have just made a few minor changes to it! He twisted arms and made promises to his fellow Democrats and Obamacare was signed, behind closed doors in the middle of the night by Democrats who had not read the 2,200 pages, didn't know what they were signing and obviously didn't care! Nancy Pelosi said: "We'll just sign it and then what's in it"!!! How bad is that?!! They didn't care because they are exempt from the plan! They voted themselves beautiful healthcare plans and retirements! They aren't forced to live on social security! They should all be fired! They think they can do whatever they want and we, the taxpayers will just tolerate it! I'm over Congress! They are just as bad if not worse than Obama!


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