Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency - General practitioner reprimanded and disqualified for nine months
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General practitioner reprimanded and disqualified for nine months

08 Feb 2021

A tribunal has found a formerly registered Western Australian general practitioner engaged in professional misconduct for inappropriate prescribing and failure to provide adequate healthcare.

On 23 November 2020 the Western Australian State Administrative Tribunal (the tribunal) found that Dr Peter Choon Lim (MED0001535223) had engaged in professional misconduct in relation to his prescribing of medications, including methadone, panadeine forte and benzodiazepines, and his clinical management of two patients during the period May 2012 and October 2018. Both patients had histories of drug dependency.

The matter was referred to the tribunal on 30 September 2020 by the Medical Board of Australia (the Board) following an investigation.

The conduct upon which the findings were made included that in prescribing medications to the two patients, Dr Lim failed to demonstrate appropriate clinical assessment or decision making, give adequate consideration to the relevant histories of substance use and dependency and have regard to best practice prescribing guidelines. Additionally, Dr Lim accepted that he failed to provide adequate clinical care by, among other things, failing to adequately assess and manage issues relating to mental health and alcohol use and failing to maintain adequate patient records.

In addition to a finding of professional misconduct, the tribunal decided to reprimand Dr Lim and disqualify him from applying for re-registration as a registered health practitioner for a period of nine months.

The tribunal ordered Dr Lim to pay a contribution of $7,500 towards the Board’s costs of the proceedings.

At the time of decision Dr Lim was not registered, having surrendered his registration and indicated his intention to retire from medical practice on 22 June 2020.

On 26 May 2020, the Board had taken immediate action restricting Dr Lim’s ability to prescribe Schedule 4 and Schedule 8 medications.

The findings can be accessed on the tribunal website.

Page reviewed 8/02/2021