HOLLYWOOD, CA — A Hollywood doctor who prescribed marijuana cookies to a 4-year-old to control temper tantrums was stripped of his license this month, but he continues to practice according to media reports.
The Medical Board of California revoked Dr. William Eidelman’s license, but it wasn’t for prescribing the marijuana to a preschooler. Eidelman’s license was revoked because he improperly diagnosed the child with ADHD and bipolar disorder after a 30-minute visit, according to the board’s finding. Eidelman was “grossly negligent” for diagnosing the little boy without consulting a psychiatrist, collecting information from his teachers, or asking his father about the child’s moods and sleep patterns, the board concluded. It was the second child in the same family to be prescribed marijuana by Eidelman.
The prescription came under scrutiny when the boy’s school found out that he was being given marijuana cookies. The medical board examined the case and took issue with the way the child was diagnosed but not with the marijuana treatment.
“It has not been established, by clear and convincing evidence, that the recommendation of medical marijuana to (the boy), with his father’s consent, violated the standard of care,” the decision reads.
However, the boy shouldn’t have been diagnosed with ADHD in the first place, the board concluded.
“Tantrums alone do not support either diagnosis,” the board’s decision said. “Being agitated and having trouble sitting still hint at ADHD, but could simply hint at a preschooler not happy to have driven many miles to a doctor’s appointment.”
After a 30-minute visit with the boy and his father, the doctor wrote in his chart that the child had a “probable combination of ADD/ADHD and bipolar disorder” and should “try cannabis in small amounts in cookies,” according to the medical board’s decision.
The doctor had previously recommended cannabis for the father’s ADHD and bipolar disorder as well, according to the board report.
Eidelman, a natural medicine physician, has been prescribing marijuana in the Los Angeles area for decades now. His practice centers on writing letters for patients to obtain medical marijuana, which he said he began doing in 1997, shortly after the state first legalized the drug for medical use. He lost his license Jan. 4, but the Los Angeles Times on Monday reported that Eidelman is still practicing.
The penalties against Eidelman stem from his treatment of a young boy who was misbehaving in school and brought to the doctor’s office by his father in September 2012, according to the medical board report.
The decision also took into account that Eidelman had been previously punished for prescribing marijuana to several undercover investigators in 2000 and 2001.
City News Service and Patch Staffer Paige Austin contributed to this report. Photo: Shutterstock
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