New York psychiatrist Richard Hochberg surrenders license to state

October 23, 2012

On June 4, 2012, the New York Department of Health Board for Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC) accepted the surrender of psychiatrist Richard Hochberg’s license.

In March 2011, Hochberg, who practices in California but also has a license in New York, was placed on probation by the Medical Board of California for gross negligence in the treatment of five patients, for whom he failed to justify/explain his reasoning behind changing his initial diagnoses of paranoid schizophrenia to schizoaffective disorder; the use the same drugs on all five patients in a general manner, without specific indications; failure to differentiate or specifically tailor treatment to the patient; prescribed off-label (for “memory loss”) a drug specifically meant for treating Alzheimer’s or dementia with Parkinson’s disease without a differential diagnosis, exploration or explanation; prescribed atypical antipsychotics without proper documentation or justification; failed to monitor the side effects of the drugs by not carrying out appropriate blood work and incomplete and redundant “boilerplate” documentation patient to patient.

Further, Hochberg was disciplined by the Board in 2005 for similar failures, including diagnosing four patients---all in their mid-40s to early-50s—with Alzheimer’s disease and prescribing them the same drug—all cited by the Board as an “extreme departure from the standard of care.”

Source: Surrender Order in the Matter of Richard Hochberg, M.D., CO-11-03-1276-A, BPMC No. 12-124, New York Dept. of Health Board for Professional Medical Conduct and Stipulated Settlement and Disciplinary Order in the Matter of the Accusation Against Richard A. Hochberg, M.D., Case Nos. 06-2005-129383, 06-2007-188425 & 06-2008-190448, OAH Nos. 2009120137 and L-2004060531, Medical Board of California.


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