Ashland Doctor Facing Drug Charges

ASHLAND — A doctor in Schuylkill County is facing charges for allegedly prescribing large quantities of painkillers to people, and in one case, it turned deadly.

Stephanie Tarapchak is an Ashland doctor who lost her license to practice medicine in 2012.   That has led to her arrest by the state attorney general.

She’s accused of unlawfully prescribing pain killers like oxycodone that led to overdoses and one death. Prosecutors say she prescribed drugs without a physical exam, dispensed drugs to herself and her family, and even smuggled drugs into the Lackawanna County Prison.

Investigators say the 13 felony charges were centered in her Ashland office, where she also lived.

“Dr. Tarapchak, I hope you rot in hell for what you did to my brother!” said Barbara Kromer.

Investigators say an overdose prescribed by Dr. Tarapchak killed Barbara Kromer’s brother Tom in June 2011.

“Why would she give him something that would hurt or kill him, why would she do that?” Kromer asked.

“She’s a damn good doctor. I don’t think she did that! Honest, I don’t believe she could have done that!” said Doris Machuzah.

Machuzah is Dr. Tarapchak’s mother.  She doesn’t believe the allegations against her daughter.

“She writes a prescription and he walks out the door and Take them all and die, what was she supposed to do? Somebody please answer me that.”

“I cry every single day over my brother,” said Kromer.

Although the doctor’s office is in Ashland, Schuylkill County and the state attorney general’s office is involved, she’ll be prosecuted in Lackawanna County court.

83 comments

  • Lindsey

    People are idiots. Doctors prescribe painkillers all the time. If you are an addict and go to the doctor for pain meds, take them all, overdose an die, how In the WORLD is it anybody else’s fault that that person is a drug addict? You all sound DUMB. No she may not be right for EVERYTHING she did but as I’ve seen said earlier, it is her job to write prescriptions. It is the patients job to take them AS PRESCRIBED. If you take too many drugs and die it’s THE PATIENTS FAULT not the doctors. That’s ridiculous and so are all of you morons that think otherwise. ;) have a good day

  • Kevin

    I know numerous people who had her for a doctor nd they were all prescribed mass amounts of different types of pain killers and Xanax .. In my mind she should be locked up. I’m a recovering heroin addict nd people like this is how I got started getting so many pills in the 1st place straight from this lady everyone’s trying to defend. Now the drug problem I’m Ashland girardville shendo has escalated to heroin there’s no stopping it now

  • Ray Plowman

    No loss? If you knew anything Charles you would know that Dr. Tarapchak has children who I’m sure love and care for their mother.

    • Sally Schwarts

      We can only hope someone smuggles her drugs in prison and she ODs. Her children don’t need a loser to give them drugs.

  • Dave

    Really because I am a father of 2 children and we have trusted greatly in Dr. Tarapchak. Not only has she been an amazing doctor, but she takes the time to get to know her patients issues. More than once my wife has called Dr. Stephanie to call in a perscription without an evaluation which she would not do. She always did a thorough examination taking the less extreme route when it came to medicine. I can say I have never been offered drugs by Dr. Steph and know no one that can say the same. If the allegations against her are true, either I am oblivious or she has been betrayed.

  • Sofia

    Really? Because I’m pretty sure people are defending her. Anyone who new her knows she is a wonderful person. She deserves none of this and the truth will soon come out. I am dr Stephanie’s former patient and I was never offered drugs by her, she’s helped me with anything. She is one of the best person I’ve talked to. Maybe she made a mistake. Maybe she prescribed something that someone over dosed on. That’s their problem not hers. I’m sure if he went to anyone else, that dr would do the same. For the people saying she should be raped, killed, or have cancer. I hope the same happens to you, or someone you love. Her family is full with amazing people. I’m sure you’re the one who has the drug problems Mary Anne welsh. So you people should be the ones dealing with your problems. I’m sure you’ve never met her because if you did you would never believe this.

  • Jay

    Tom was taking medication for a brain tumor. He kept complaining the medicine was not working. He kept going back to his doctor for help. He took a lethal overdose that she prescribed for him. Most people trust their doctors. Know all the facts before you judge.

  • Nina Grant

    Everyone here will meet their maker and the cancer rape and death comments will not be looked upon in a good light

  • peanuts

    THE PEOPLE ARE JUST AS BAD AS THE DOCTOR . THEY ARE ADDICTS . THATS WHY THEY KEPT GOING BACK TO HER. IF YOU ABUSE YOUR MEDICATION THEN IT IS YOUR PROBLEM. IN TODAYS WORLD OVERDOSING HAS BECOME A BIG PROBLEM . WHY BECAUSE PEOPLE TODAY DO NOT KNOW HOW TO DEAL WITH STRESS. IF THEY DON’T GET IT FROM A DR. THEY ARE RUNNING TO THE ER’S. IN THIS CASE I THINK ALOT OF MARRIAGES AND RELATIONS WERE RUINED AND IT IS A CASE OF REVENGE. WISH THEY WOULD TOTALY CLEAN UP THE DRUGS IN SCHUYLKILL COUNTY.

  • Cynthia Fowler MD

    I, as a practicing medical doctor in the Atlanta area, can assure you that Dr. Stephanie is not to blame. Doctors every day are faced with addicts that can pass as the most put together of people. It’s time to stop blaming the hard working doctors and have addicts face the music and get help.

    • beanerRN

      I am all about supporting Drs when the facts support them as well. I know for a FACT that this lowlife Dr would hand out prescriptions to her boyfriend and his friends. I also know other illegal things this “wonderful” human being did. She is scum!

    • Steph

      It may not be her fault that some patients are addicts, but whose fault is it if she smuggled drugs into a prison and was writing herself these same scripts??

  • Ragin Caujian

    Did anyone get a look at Barb in the video? That should be enough to prove Doctor Tarapchak isn’t in the wrong.

    • Megan

      What does what Barbara looks like having anything to do with all the illegal things the doctor was arrested for? They didn’t arrest her because of anything Barbara said. She is accused of many different things, none of which involve that woman. You are just an ignorant human being.

  • Ella

    What I don’t understand is that people who are claiming Dr.Tarapchak gave them prescription drugs are the same people who accepted them. I highly doubt any of you turned down her offer for drugs, which also makes you in the wrong. If you didn’t need them then why would you ever accept them? Those who are doing this need to reevaluate their lives and realize that they are no angles either

    • Donna

      If a Dr gave a child an apple with a razor blade in, it would be the kid’s fault for eating it? Great thinking!

      • Melissa

        Certainly not saying that this doctor is innocent but this is different than giving a child an apple with a razor blade in it. Her patients knew what they were getting and taking. They also knew the risks.

  • mandy

    I so agree with ur last comment Greg. Although I do feel that all patients receiving narcotics should have random pill counts n drug tests as well.

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