The suspension was first issued during the last week in February, Nickens said. Shahzad was given time to come into compliance but within the last 10 days or so was judged to have failed to do so and was given a second suspension, Nickens said.
He has been given additional time to gain compliance.
Both suspensions were recommended by the executive committee of McDowell's medical staff and accepted by the board of Ephraim McDowell Health, Nickens said.
Meanwhile, Shahzad, who is in private practice with Dr. Craig Enlow, has appealed the suspensions.
While he doesn't have privileges at McDowell, Shahzad can go to the hospital and offer consulation to his patients on surgery and other matters, Nickens said.
Also, Shahzad can have a physician with privileges at McDowell admit Shahzad's patients to the hospital and attend to them there, he said.
In addition, Shahzad still has privileges at James B. Haggin Memorial Hospital in Harrodsburg.
Falling behind on paperwork
Shahzad said his suspension at McDowell "has absolutely nothing to do with patient care."
"I received the suspension because I had gotten behind on dictation of my patients' medical histories and physicals and discharge summaries. It was the first time in my 12 years here that I had gotten behind on my paperwork."
Shahzad said the problem dates back to December when he was "very, very busy" seeing patients.
"By January, I had gotten way behind on the paperwork, and I admit to that," he said.
Shahzad said he has been given additional time to come into compliance and is confident he will do so.
"The medical staff and the administration and I are trying to work it out so I can get all my paperwork up to date and make sure I keep up with it," he said.
"It will all work out and be fine."
Shahzad said his partner has admitted some of his patients to McDowell and attended to them there.
"Since I still have privileges at Haggin in Harrodsburg, I now am admitting some of the patients I would have sent to McDowell to Haggin," he said. "And Dr. Enlow has been admitting some of my patients to McDowell.
"Dr. Enlow has been very helpful during this time," he said. "He is a very busy doctor, just as I am,and he has taken time to help with my patients when they need hospitalization at McDowell."
Shahzad said many other doctors on the McDowell medical staff also have been helpful.
"Many doctors and nurses and other staff at the hospital have been very supportive," he said.
Shahzad said his patients are "very upset" over the suspension and "very supportive" of him. He said many of them fear the suspension will force him to leave Danville.
"I want it to be known to my patients and the community that I am not leaving," he said. "I am committed to this community and to provide quality care to all of my patients."
Shahzad estimated that he and Enlow have about 18,000 patients from throughout central Kentucky and other parts of the state.
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How McDowell handles physician non-compliance
All doctors on the Ephraim McDowell Regional Medical Center medical staff must abide by federal and state laws and regulations and the staff's own bylaws governing all aspects of their activities in the hospital, from the care they provide to their patients, to the drugs they order for them, to the records they keep on them.
Hospital spokesman Harry Nickens said the process of investigating possible non-compliance by a doctor can be handled in a relatively short period of time or be protracted, taking a few weeks or a few months.
If a physician is found to be in non-compliance, he or she is given time to come into compliance, he said. A non-compliant doctor may appeal his or her suspension, he said.
The hospital administration is not involved in the process.
"The investigation is handled by the executive board of the medical staff, and its recommendation goes to the Ephraim McDowell Health board," he said. "The administration has nothing to do with it."