Indiana Suspends, Fines Two Veterinarians Four Months After Offense Date

Stewards in Indiana issued 60-day suspensions and $5,000 fines to two veterinarians on Nov. 7 after determining they violated commission rules prohibiting possession of non-FDA approved drugs.

Drs. Cynthia Loomis and Nicole Wettstein, both practitioners at Equine Medical Associates, were also handed summary suspensions banning them from racetrack grounds.

The rulings also cited both for “possession of non-FDA approved compounds, where there are FDA approved, commercially available medications to appropriately treat a horse; possession of improperly compounded substances which contain non-FDA approved ingredients; and, possession of drugs that do not meet the labeling requirements established in IHRC regulations.”

The rulings both list an infraction date of July 5, 2022. That is one day after Loomis was summarily suspended alongside trainer/owner/agent Marvin Johnson after officials alleged she treated two of his horses on race day. The commission ultimately failed to bring a charge against her regarding that alleged treatment.

When reached by the Paulick Report on Nov. 14, Loomis said that a tack room used by her and Wettstein for medication and equipment storage at Horseshoe Indianapolis was locked up at the time of the alleged infraction related to Johnson. When the commission failed to bring a charge against her related to that case but sought to extend her summary suspension through the end of this year, Loomis went before an administrative law judge in an attempt to lift the summary suspension. On Oct. 15, an administrative law judge found in Loomis’ favor and ended the summary suspension, citing a time limit the commission had to bring a formal charge.

Loomis says it was after this Oct. 15 decision from the administrative law judge that the Indiana commission notified her they intended to unlock and search the storage room.

The November ruling stems from that search, and Loomis says it refers to compounded phenylbutazone paste and powder in that tack room. Loomis said she had the drug in compounded forms because the mass-produced version was on long-term backorder in July.

Compounded versions of mass-produced FDA-approved drugs are considered legal in some circumstances when there is a significant or long-term supply chain disruption of the commercial version of the drug.

She also said investigators found expired isoxsuprine, which was in the storage room awaiting a trip back to her primary base in Kentucky for appropriate disposal.

“It’s absurd, is what it is. It’s just another hoop to jump through,” said Loomis. “This is their last attempt to keep me suspended in some way, to keep me off the grounds through the end of the meet. Which is ridiculous, because I don’t want to go back to Indiana anyway.”

Loomis and Wettstein were both cited since they both have their names on the storage room. Wettstein was served with medication labeling violations on July 15, but then postponed her hearing until October.

Both veterinarians have appealed the ruling.

“It is clear that the IHRC, after having been denied the ability to renew Dr. Loomis’s original summary suspension from July 4, 2022, set a hearing regarding other alleged violations as a way to circumvent the lift of the original summary suspension and re-suspend Loomis,” read the appeal in part. “Dr. Loomis has been and continues to be irreparably harmed because she cannot work in Indiana or in any other jurisdiction and her reputation and excellent veterinarian record have been irreversibly tarnished. To date, the IHRC has not filed an administrative complaint against Dr. Loomis for any alleged infractions which occurred in July of this year.”

The post Indiana Suspends, Fines Two Veterinarians Four Months After Offense Date appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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