State pulls Vermont dentist's license

The state of Vermont has revoked the license of Randall Miller, DDS, dentist and senior member of the state board of dental examiners, citing four unprofessional conduct charges related to improper dispensing and use of prescriptions.

Dr. Miller, initially licensed in 1984, agreed not to contest the state disciplinary action proposed by the Vermont Office of Professional Regulation, instead signing a stipulation and consent order.

Dr. Miller overdosed July 3 and was revived with Narcan, records show. He was taken to the hospital, where he was found to have cocaine, opiates, benzodiazepine, marijuana and alcohol in his system, according to records cited by the Barre Montpelier Times Argus.

Dr. Miller admitted to ingesting a white powdery substance July 3, but said he thought it was methylphenidate, or Ritalin, according to the Times Argus. He said he has been prescribed the drug for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder for about 20 years, as well as hydrocodone-acetaminophen for shoulder and hip pain for about 25 years, according to the publication.

Dr. Miller had never signed up for the Vermont Prescription Monitoring System, a state program that provides authorization to write prescriptions, according to investigation findings included in the signed stipulation. Dr. Miller still provided repeat prescriptions for controlled substances for the same few patients from 2017-21, records show. The repeat prescriptions "almost never had a corresponding note in those patients' dental records that would support the need for a controlled substance prescription," the stipulation reads.

Elizabeth St. James, prosecutor for the state, filed four unprofessional charges against Dr. Miller: failure to practice competently, which includes the performance of unsafe or unacceptable patient or client care; promotion of the sale of drugs or services for a patient in a manner to exploit the patient, including providing drugs for other than legal and legitimate therapeutic purposes; failure to comply with federal and state laws or rules governing the profession; and failure to exercise independent professional judgment in order to avoid actions that are "repugnant to the obligations of the profession."

The signed stipulation and consent order says it resolves the charges "and also fully resolves any other licensing matters regarding respondent's dental license." The document also states that Dr. Miller "neither admits nor denies the accuracy of the statement of facts and violations."

The Barre Montpelier Times Argus attempted unsuccessfully to contact both Dr. Miller and his lawyer. A receptionist at his old office told the publication Dr. Miller had retired.

The state revocation happened after 10 members of the Vermont Board of Dental Examiners were temporarily removed and an ad hoc board was specially appointed to hear the complaint. Members are required to recuse themselves if they have an actual or perceived conflict of interest with a case. Dr. Miller had served on the dental board since 2010, and resigned Oct. 21. 

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