A doctor accused of overprescribing painkillers to patients at the Tomah VA Medical Center has agreed to give up his medical license in Wisconsin.
In exchange for surrendering his license and closing his private psychiatric practice in La Crosse, three complaints against David Houlihan will be dropped. Houlihan was nicknamed the “Candy Man” for his excessive approval of painkillers that played a role in the death of Marine veteran Jason Simcakoski in 2014.
Simcakoski’s father, Marvin Simcakoski of Stevens Points, says he has mixed feelings about the decision to reach a settlement in the case. “We’re happy that he surrendered his license, obviously, but it brings up all the memories back about our son and what happened to him, and also what’s happened to other patients from the VA facility,” he said.
Simcakoski says he hopes the case will serve as a warning to other doctors. “When you prescribe something like this to someone, there have to be some consequences for wrongdoing. We just hope that other doctors see what has happened here, and think twice before giving patients too much medication.”
Under the agreement, Houlihan will never again be able to apply for a medical license in Wisconsin.
Affiliate WSAU contributed to this report.