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    Michael Jackson's Cash-Strapped Doctor Returns to Work

    Dr. Conrad Murray AP Photo/Isaac Brekken

    The doctor is in. Heaven help the patients.

    The increasingly cash-strapped Conrad Murray, Michael Jackson's infamous M.D. and the doctor at the center of authorities' still-pending investigation into the pop icon's death, returned to work Friday.

    "Because of a deteriorating financial condition and prompting by many of his beloved patients, on Nov. 20, 2009, Dr. Conrad Murray resumed his cardiology practice in Houston, Texas," Murray's attorney, Ed Chernoff, said.

    And he's wasting no time in expanding his services to the full scope of his former clientele.

    "Dr. Murray plans to attend to patients in both Las Vegas and Houston. His decision to first return to practice in Houston was made because of the greater need these low-income patients have for his services and the prohibitive cost of reopening his clinic in Las Vegas."

    And if you think people may be hesitant to get treated by the doctor who may or, slightly less likely, may not have had anything to do with Jackson's death, well, think again.

    According to Chernoff, Murray saw 16 patients at his Houston offices on Friday. He plans to see just six or seven today, due to the attention his practice is now receiving.

    It's his first time resuming office hours since April, when he suspended his practice to take on the full-time (and unexpectedly temporary) role of Jackson's personal physician.

    Meanwhile, over the weekend, Murray, along with several dozen of his media friends, attended services at Houston's Galilee Missionary Baptist Church Sunday.

    "I'm taking my life back step by step, and I wanted to come home and this is my home," the sunglasses-wearing doc said after standing up to address the congregation. And cameras.

    "And therefore, I am back to serve. This isn't easy for me. Mentally, it's tough."

    Not least of all because the Texas Medical Board has reportedly jumped on the bandwagon and opened its own investigation into the doctor's practices.

    As for that rapidly dwindling back account, Chernoff said that while Murray was supposed to receive $150,000 per month under Jackson's employ, he was never paid for his services.

    Can't imagine why.

    —Additional reporting by Lindsay Miller

    ________

    Conrad Murray clearly knows from scandal. Wonder what he made of Adam Lambert's headline-grabbing AMA performance?

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