The medical license of Tullahoma ear, nose and throat doctor Domenic Canonico has been reprimanded on grounds of “unprofessional, dishonorable or unethical conduct,” according to the state Department of Health.
The reprimand, issued by the state Board of Medical Examiners, addresses 18 personal refill prescriptions Canonico received from his own office over a two-and-a-half year period.
According to the health department, between April 2013 and October 2015, Canonico had a physician assistant under his supervision write him prescriptions for Ritalin, as opposed to requesting those refills from his treating physician.
A medical record for Canonico, including the prescriptions written by the physician assistant, was maintained at the clinic where both worked.
Ritalin is a brand name for methylphenidate, a central nervous system stimulant most commonly prescribed to treat hyperactivity and improve impulse control.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) classifies Ritalin as a Schedule II controlled substance due to its high potential for abuse “which may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.”
In October, Canonico voluntarily entered into a monitoring agreement with the Tennessee Medical Foundation (TMF), an organization that offers professional assistance to physicians suffering from chemical dependencies. Under the agreement, Canonico will, for at least two years, engage in psychotherapy with a therapist who communicates regularly with the TMF.
Canonico has been in compliance with that agreement since October and has been deemed fit to continue practicing medicine following an evaluation by the Vanderbilt Comprehensive Assessment Program.
A licensure reprimand is a formal, written disciplinary action issued to a licensee for one-time or less severe violations.
In connection to the reprimand, Canonico has been ordered to pay 18 civil penalties in the amount of $100, representing each prescription he received in violation of Section II Grounds for Discipline, for a total of $1,800.
Canonico will also pay the costs assessed against the Board of Medical Examiners by the Division’s Bureau of Investigations in connection with the matter, not to exceed $2,000.
Canonico’s ENT Associates practice is located at 507 NW Atlantic St. in Tullahoma. He also practices in Shelbyville and Manchester.