The Latest: Doctor upset in loss over prescription records

LOS ANGELES (AP) The Latest on a California Supreme Court decision upholding the right of the state medical board to access a prescription drug database (all times local):

4:15 p.m.

A Burbank doctor says he's disappointed he lost his appeal challenging the California Medical Board's use of a prescription drug database to punish him.

The California Supreme Court ruled Monday that the medical board did not violate patients' privacy when it dug through Dr. Alwin Lewis' prescribing history.

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Lewis was on probation for three years after an investigation found he engaged in negligent acts and unprofessional conduct.

The discipline came after a patient complained that Lewis had suggested she go on a diet.

The woman's complaints had nothing to do with prescriptions, but investigators pored over Lewis' prescribing history to bring the case against him.

Lewis argued investigators never should have been able to look at the records and invaded patients' privacy.

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10:33 a.m.

The California Supreme Court says the state medical board did not violate patients' privacy when it dug through prescription data while investigating their doctor.

The ruling Monday came in the case of a Burbank doctor who was investigated after a patient complained that the physician suggested she go on a diet.

While the board found he didn't provide improper care to that patient, it later put him on probation for providing excessive prescriptions to two other patients after digging through his prescribing history in a state database.

Dr. Alwin Lewis challenged the discipline on grounds that the state violated the privacy of his patients by looking at their medication records.

The court unanimously ruled that the board had good reason to search the records without a warrant or subpoena.