Psychiatrist John S. Andrews disciplined by state board for chronic record keeping failures

February 5, 2009

The Georgia Composite State Board of Medical Examiners issued a Public Consent Order on psychiatrist John S. Andrews, ordering him to obtain 20 hours of continuing medical education in the area of record keeping, over and above the normal requirement for all Georgia physicians. The Board’s “Findings of Fact” provides the following data regarding Dr. Andrews’s treatment of two patients:

  • Insufficient patient history, no evidence of any physical examinations, failure to order any laboratory and/or radiographic studies or review medical records from previous physicians for a patient who he treated and prescribed multiple medications on a monthly basis for more than 11 years.

  • Provided psychotherapy to the patient and also acted as primary care physician, prescribing blood pressure medication but only checked her blood pressure two or three times in 11 years.

  • Following the death of the patient, Dr. Andrews signed the death certificate and recorded the cause of death as “cardiac failure” though he later admitted in an interview with the Board that he had no idea what caused the patient’s death, and also stated that his care of the patient fell below any reasonable standard of care for a family practitioner.

  • Andrews provided treatment to the patient’s son beginning at approximately the same time. The patient’s son presented to Dr. Andrews with a history of epilepsy and, later, lower back pain. Andrews continued to prescribe the medication to this patient that he was already taking when he presented to Dr. Andrews but also began prescribing Darvocet in 2000, when the patient began complaining of lower back pain and continued to prescribe it while the patient was incarcerated on a drug conviction. Dr. Andrews records for this patient do not contain sufficient patient history or evidence of any physical examinations performed.

Dr. Andrews is additionally required to complete a mini-residency program on appropriate prescribing of controlled substances.

(Public Consent Order, In the Matter of: John S. Andrews, M.D., Gerrish Smith, License No. 31555, Docket No. 20090041, Composite State Board of Medical Examiners, 5 February 2009.)


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