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Oregon Medical Board investigates Gresham pediatrician John Calcagno

Dr. John Calcagno, a Gresham pediatrician, could lose his medical license according to charges brought against him by the Oregon Medical Board, which licenses physicians in the state.

The board is proposing to revoke Calcagno’s license, assess a $10,000 civil penalty and recover its costs, according to board documents.

Calcagno’s attorney Jeffrey Young, who specializes in malpractice and professional liability law, declined to comment or make Calcagno available. Calcagno did not return a call seeking comment.

Calcagno has the right to have a hearing before an administrative law judge, but the medical board will make the final decision on any penalties.

“It is rare that someone loses their license,” said Kathleen Haley, the board’s executive director.

The board says it found violations of the Medical Practices Act regarding “unprofessional or dishonorable conduct; gross or repeated acts of negligence; and prescribing controlled substances without a legitimate medical purpose or without following accepted procedures for examination of patients or for record keeping.”

Calcagno Pediatrics has three other pediatricians, a naturopathic physician and nurse practioners in its office on the Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center campus. The office described Calcagno as “on leave” or “on sabbatical.” He still has an active medical license.

This is not the first time Calcagno has come before the Medical Board. In 2006 he worked under what the board calls a stipulated order. Calcagno was required to undergo additional training and was barred from accepting patients with certain mental health disorders.

“He has a history with us,” said Haley.

In the most recent OMB document, the Medical Board tells of one child, dubbed Patient A, who was prescribed “excessive doses” of Schedule II drugs, which are defined as having a high potential for abuse.

Patient A first came to Calcagno in 2006 when he was 4 years old. The document details an increasing variety and amount of drugs prescribed to Patient A and said the doctor did not consider the impact of an “acrimonious divorce” on the child.

Patient A was given Zoloft, an antidepressant, then Intuniv, a medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and in 2010 also got a prescription for Prozac. Additional medications were prescribed or dosages increased.

Eventually, Patient A had been in foster care for five months and was transitioning back to his mother’s care. More medications were prescribed, after Patient A became fearful of abuse from his stepfather, the document said.

The medical board noted Calcagno “did not address the role anxiety and trauma may have had in Patient A’s condition.” The board document noted that Calcagno “subjected Patient A to the risk of harm” with his medication of the patient.

The document lays out similar concerns about the treatment of two other children.

The Oregon Medical Board has not scheduled a hearing on the matter. The situation will likely not be resolved until the fall, Haley said.