Cherry Hill doctor's license suspended after patient death

New Jersey's state Board of Medical Examiners has suspended the license of a Cherry Hill doctor who gave the painkiller Subsys to a patient who did not qualify for it and later died, authorities said Tuesday.

Dr. Vivienne Matalon cannot prescribe painkillers and "is barred from accepting new patients into her practice . . . pending a final resolution of the allegations against her, and pending further action by the board," the state attorney general's Division of Consumer Affairs said in a news release. She can see existing patients until Oct. 31, the office said.

Authorities said Matalon, who also has an office in Camden, gave Subsys, which treats breakthrough pain in cancer patients, to a 32-year-old woman who did not have cancer. The woman used Subsys for more than a year until her death in March. An autopsy determined she had died from an "adverse effect of drugs."

- Michael Boren