The N.C. Medical Board said Wednesday it may have reached a settlement to address the second of two hearings into the professional conduct of Dr. Anne Litton White of Winston-Salem.
White has been the operator of Carolina Laser and Cosmetic Center since 2004.
The board had decided Monday, with the agreement of White’s attorneys, to move the Raleigh hearing from Oct. 17 to 8 a.m. Dec. 12.
On Wednesday, board communications director Jean Fisher Brinkley said the Dec. 12 hearing “will not proceed because the board has reached a proposed settlement agreement with Dr. White."
“The proposed agreement will be considered by the board (on Oct. 17) and, if approved, would be public the same day.”
Brinkley said Blankenship “will present the proposed order to the panel. Dr. White and her attorney will not be in attendance.”
The father-son attorney team of Dan Blue II and Dan Blue III represent White. The Blue LLP firm declined to comment Wednesday on the potential settlement.
The second hearing is expected to center on three allegations against White’s Carolina Laser and Cosmetic Center practice: having 40 containers of expired medication and solutions that were more than 10 years old; having an unlicensed physician assist White with a procedure; and a patient who wanted a tattoo removed filing a complaint that he or she had been burned because the setting on a laser was alleged to have been set too high.
Brian Blankenship, the board’s deputy general counsel, noted in Monday’s brief continuance notice the potential settlement.
The second hearing has been continued three times since the initial Oct. 18, 2018, date.
Prior to the settlement statement, the board said in a Tuesday notice that a pre-hearing teleconference would be held at 11 a.m. Dec. 4 and would not be recorded. Preliminary motions are required to be filed by Nov. 29.
Blankenship said in February when he agreed to delay the hearing until Oct. 17 that he had received “additional information and intends to issue a second amended notice of charges and allegations” against White.
The board has not disclosed what the second amended notice contains, or when it would be made public.
It would be the fifth time White has been subject to a notice of charges and allegations, the others occurring in 2004, 2005, 2008 and 2017.
Her license has been suspended for a combined 110 days since 2004, the last times from May 7-16, 2018, and from July 16-26, 2018. Her practice has been operational since the second suspension ended.
The latest suspension was handed down by the board in June 2018 following an intense two-day hearing.
A charge of unprofessional conduct was at the heart of the medical board’s notice in which it decided on a summary judgment against White.
The N.C. Medical Practices Act defines unprofessional conduct, in part, as “departure from, or the failure to conform to, the standards of acceptable and prevailing medical practice, or the ethics of the medical profession, irrespective of whether or not a patient is injured thereby, or the committing of any act contrary to honesty, justice or good morals.”
That notice listed charges and allegations, among them that White reused syringes and dermatological products on multiple patients. Those actions would violate state medical standards.
White also was accused of giving her approval to keep, for months and in non-biohazard settings, small plastic bags of human fat and blood that had been drawn during liposuction procedures. Employees complained of a sickening smell as the residue decomposed over time.
The board determined that White acted with unprofessional conduct in not meeting acceptable standards for medical care at her practice.
The board did not determine she acted with “immoral and dishonorable conduct” with her practices and procedures during a period from June 2014 to February 2018.
The board gave White an indefinite suspension, but chose to issue a stay outside a 20-day active sentence.
Blue II said in June 2018 that White chose to comply with the decision and that the 20-day active suspension was acceptable in that the board recognized White’s efforts to resolve the concerns the board had expressed.
Among previous charges raised against White was that she marketed herself as a board-certified dermatologist when she wasn’t, and that she used medications that at the time the U.S. Food and Drug Administration hadn’t approved.