Prosecutor: Ball Memorial Hospital doctor cared for patients under influence of morphine, fentanyl

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UPDATE (March 29, 2017): Jose Ramos pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a narcotic and one count of criminal recklessness. His other charges were dropped. 

MUNCIE, Ind. – Prosecutors announced the arrest of a doctor at Ball Memorial Hospital following an eight-month investigation conducted by the DEA and the Delaware County Prosecutor’s Office.

Police arrested Dr. Jose Ramos at his home in Fort Wayne this morning.

Ramos faces 10 counts, including possession of a narcotic (opiates), theft and criminal recklessness.

According to Deputy Prosecutor Zachary Craig, Ramos participated in multiple surgeries as an anesthesiologist at Ball Memorial Hospital while under influence of drugs.

Prosecutors reviewed thousands of pages of documents and medical records since the investigation began in October 2015. During an audit, investigators found he had taken out drugs for medical procedures, but he never administered those drugs to patients. At least six different types of drugs were reported missing.

Prosecutors described the hospitals drug administration system as secure. Doctors type in a code to get drugs for patients and there's records of each drug removed from each case.

“The pharmacy department audits that to make sure what’s left matches up," said Chief Trail Deputy Eric Hoffman.

There were two patients under his care during the time investigators allegedly found morphine and fentanyl in his system.

Nurses and other medical staff reported Amos acting strange during a few procedures.

“He appeared, in her opinion, to be under the influence. He appeared to be groggy, was avoiding eye contact, had slurred speech, was not giving a full accounting or detailed report as to the patient," Craig explained the statement of a nurse.

According to Craig, Ramos admitted to the DEA that he had a drug addiction.

Ball Memorial Hospital released the following statement Wednesday afternoon: “While we are not able to provide information on the situation, we are cooperating fully with the authorities.”

Ramos was released from the Delaware County Jail on a $32,000 bond.

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