Laguna Niguel doctor disciplined for prescribing Ambien to his mother, brother

A Laguna Niguel doctor has been disciplined by the California Medical Board for excessively prescribing Ambien to his relatives without a medical exam, according to legal documents recently made public.

In a settlement reached with the board, Dr. John Chu was placed on five years probation, prohibited from solo practice and forbidden from prescribing controlled substances to family members. Chu’s attorney Fredrick Ray, through an assistant, declined to comment Tuesday.

According to the documents, Chu practiced emergency medicine at Kaiser Permanente in Orange County from 2008 to 2013 and used his Kaiser prescription pads to write Ambien prescriptions for relatives and others who he did not see or treat at his Kaiser office.

Ambien, intended for the short-term treatment of insomnia, can be abused or lead to dependence, the documents say.

Chu prescribed Ambien to his…

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