April 3, 2013
In March 2012, after receiving inquiries from personnel at several local pharmacies, Penn State Hershey Medical Center leadership initiated an investigation into unusual prescribing patterns by Claude Fanelli, MD, a practicing cardiologist at Penn State Hershey at the time. After identifying several questionable prescriptions, Medical Center leadership removed Dr. Fanelli from clinical practice and reported our concerns to law enforcement.
The ensuing investigation by the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office has resulted in criminal charges being filed against Dr. Fanelli today and we have since learned that his alleged actions may have been part of a larger illegal enterprise.
Dr. Fanelli is no longer employed by Penn State Hershey Medical Center. His official employment with us ended in September 2012.
By virtue of their profession, physicians hold a position of significant trust and authority. Any misuse of that authority for any purpose is simply intolerable.
We are grateful to the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office for their diligent pursuit of the facts in this case and for enabling Penn State Hershey Medical Center to contribute to their investigation. We will continue to work cooperatively with the Attorney General's representatives and assist them in any way possible.