Eisenberg & Associates are Investigating Dr. Dzung Ahn Pham for Alleged Opiate Overprescribing Which Caused Multiple Deaths

A complaint filed against Dr. Pham in the U.S. Federal District Court in Santa Ana, CA alleges he prescribed controlled substances without a legitimate medical purpose in violation of
federal law (Central District of CA case no. SA18-652M). The authorities allege that Dr. Pham prescribed drugs to the DUI driver who struck and killed a Costa Mesa Fire Captain and that the mass shooter who killed 12 people at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, CA had drugs in his possession prescribed by Pham.

After an exhaustive investigation by U.S. Department of Justice DEA agents, Dr. Pham was arrested on December 18, 2018. The investigation included undercover agents who posed as “patients” who easily received prescriptions for opiates and narcotics from Dr. Pham without proper medical examinations or diagnostic tests after paying cash for the visits. The affidavit filed in Federal Court by the lead DEA agent detailed the investigation including allegations that:

  • Dr. Pham prescribed lethal combinations of opiates (such as hydrocodone and Norco), benzodiazepine anti- anxiety drugs (Xanax and Valium) and muscle relaxants (Soma), which in combination can cause respiratory depression and death;
  • From 2014 to 2017, Pham wrote more than 52,000 prescriptions for controlled substances which is about 335 per week or more than 65 per day which is an extremely excessive amount;
  • Dr. Pham prescribed drugs to Stephen Taylor Scarpa, who is charged with the DUI vehicular manslaughter of a Costa Mesa Fire Captain who died on November 3, 2018. It is alleged that Scarpa was under the influence of opiates prescribed by Pham at the time of the fatal collision;
  • Five other victims died from drug overdoses after receiving prescriptions from Dr. Pham;
  • Authorities allege that David Ian Long, the shooter who killed 12 people at the Borderline Bar & Grill on November 7, 2018, had drugs in his possession prescribed by Dr. Pham.

“The opiate crisis in the U.S. is ongoing due to the unconscionable conduct of ‘pill mill doctors’ who prescribe opiates and narcotics for profit. This has resulted in the untimely deaths of patients and other victims which has caused irreparable harm to their families,” said Irvine attorney Larry Eisenberg, who has represented multiple families in wrongful death cases against opiate doctors and other health care facilities.