The DEA and local Florida law enforcement have worked together to shut down a statewide pill mill operation.
After receiving several complaints that a pain clinic had been writing excessive amounts of narcotic prescriptions, an investigation was opened back in 2010 in Vero Beach.
The investigation led to the discovery of six additional clinics participating in the operation. The clinics were spread throughout the state with locations in Jacksonville, Miami, Gainesville, Daytona Beach, Sarasota, and Pensacola.
According to DEA, this particular ring was larger than most they see.
Typically the operations include just a single clinic, this one involved several clinics, and in several cities. What is even more shocking is that the clinics were allegedly owned by municipal employees.
So far, a total of seven doctors and seven clinic owners and managers have been arrested. Rusty Payne, DEA spokesman, spoke with Fox News. "Thousands of prescriptions, maybe in the tens of thousands of prescriptions, said Payne. He went on to explain that these pills were not only going to addicts and individuals, but to dealers making huge profits by spreading the pills throughout the country. The DEA estimates that millions of pills could have come from this one operation.
Florida has had a known problem with keeping tabs on the narcotic prescriptions being written to patients, and the state it making efforts to help monitor this problem. Just last year, a database was proposed to help regulate prescriptions written to people that may be doctor shopping. Also, pain clinics are now prohibited from dispensing medications on site.
The regulations are a step in the right direction. According to studies by the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, the number of people in the U.S. that die from prescription drug abuse is more than those who die from illicit drugs like heroin or cocaine.
If you are struggling with prescription drug addiction, please contact us.
Original article: foxnews.com
Photo courtesy of morguefile
- Item Tag: prescription drugs