If you are a doctor, you have seen the effects of the opioid crisis first hand. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Service (HHS) estimates that in 2019 around 10 million people misused opioids. Wherever there is demand for a drug, someone is looking to supply that demand for profit.
When the police catch someone illegally distributing drugs, they want to find out who supplies those drugs. You may be surprised when the police say it is you.
How can medical staff unknowingly get caught up in a prescription drug ring?
Your position gives you the power to issue the drugs that are so in demand. Those involved in trafficking opioids are willing to take advantage of you to make money. Here are some of the ways they might do that:
- Convincing you they need the drug when they do not: Some good actors work on stage and screen. Others make money convincing doctors that they are in pain.
- Convincing you that they need more of the drug than they do: This could be exaggerating the pain to get an increased dosage or saying they need an extra fortnight’s supply as they are going away.
- Using your name to issue prescriptions: If your prescription pad has gone missing, someone may be using it to write fake prescriptions for opioids. They can then take these to a pharmacy, pick up the drugs and sell them.
As a doctor, constructing an appropriate defense to drugs charges takes on extra importance. If convicted, the medical board might bar you from working in your profession on top of the criminal consequences you will face.