Hyderabad: An Andhra Pradesh-origin psychiatrist dubbed “Dr Death” by the police has been arrested in the US after 36 of his patients died with at least 12 killed by overdose on prescription medication.
Dr Nagareddy Narendra Kumar Reddy, a psychiatrist in Clayton County, Georgia, has been put behind bars on suspicion of overprescribing prescription medication and running a “pill mill”, reports from the US said.
Dr Kumar Reddy is an alumnus of Kurnool Medical College.
According to Medical Council of India records, Dr Kumar Reddy was registered with the council in 1981 and his address is shown as LIG-H quarters, Barkatpura, Hyderabad.
He holds an MD from the University of Alabama Medical Centre and is a board-certified psychiatrist in Jonesboro, Georgia. He was working with Southern Regional Medical Centre.
Legal documents of Clayton County court revealed that “36 of Nagareddy’s patients have died while being prescribed controlled substances from Dr Nagareddy, 12 of which have been confirmed by investigators through autopsy reports to have been the result of prescription drug intoxication”.
The documents also said, “Former and current patients have admitted to obtaining controlled substance prescriptions from Dr Nagareddy without having a legitimate medical need.”
Dr Nagareddy’s offices searched, assets seized
Clayton County police said he has been overprescribing opiates and benzodiazepine and the last several years has seen a multitude of overdoses and overdose deaths. DEA agents searched his house and office.
Clayton county district attorney Tracy Graham Lawson told WSBTV, a local TV station, “He’s charged with prescribing pain medication which is beyond his professional brief as a psychiatrist and not for a legitimate purpose for the patient.”
The district attorney’s office also filed a civil action suit to seize his assets. Nearly 40 federal and local agents raided Dr Nagareddy’s offices and later moved on to his home to seize more assets.
“People come to this person for help, and instead of getting help, they suffer deadly problems,” Clayton County Police Chief Register was quoted as saying. “If the allegations are true, he is Dr Death, no doubt about it.”
One of Nagareddy’s patients has been identified as Audrey Austin, a 29 year-old mother of two. She died of a fatal prescription drug overdose just days after she visited Dr Nagareddy.
“She was an addict and he made it very easy for her,” Ms Audrey’s mother Ruth Carr was quoted as saying by New York Daily News.
Kurnool Medical College principal Dr G.S. Ram Prasad did not have information regarding the arrested doctor.
“Most of the professors who taught the 1980 batch have retired by now,” he said....