Orlando VA Medical Center doctor accused of DUI suspended

Report shows ophthalmologist was under influence of Rx drugs

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

Dr. Charles Young is accused of driving under the influence, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

ORLANDO, Fla. - An Orlando Veteran Affairs Medical Center doctor has been suspended after Florida Highway Patrol troopers said he was involved in a crash and is accused of driving under the influence of prescription drugs.

Charles Young, 66, was involved in a crash Tuesday morning on Narcoosse Road at Emerson Lake Boulevard with another vehicle, FHP troopers said.

The other driver accused Young of slamming into the back of his car while he had two small children in the back seat, according to the report.

Troopers spoke with Young after the crash and said he was "lethargic, and appeared to be in a daze," according to the FHP arrest report.

After Young performed poorly during a walk-and-turn test and a one-leg stand test, troopers placed him under arrest at 9:54 a.m., they said.

A chemical analysis of Young’s urine sample revealed that he was under the influence of several prescription drugs, including a painkiller and a central nervous system depressant, also known as a sedative, according to the arrest report.

CNS depressants are often used to treat anxiety or sleeping disorders, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Young has been employed as an ophthalmologist with the Orlando VA Medical Center since March 2008, a center spokeswoman confirmed.

Orlando VA Medical Center public affairs officer Heather Frebe said Young's employer was aware of the arrest and investigating the incident "to include determining if this was a medical, alcohol, or substance abuse issue."
"The Orlando VA Medical Center takes very seriously any allegations of alcohol or substance abuse among its clinicians," Frebe said. "Appropriate action – up to and including termination – will be pursued if warranted."

Young's clinical privileges have been suspended until after the investigation and a clinical case review is complete, Frebe said.

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