Florida has become ground zero in the war on prescription pills on America's streets. In recent years, the number of shady doctors and fake prescriptions has soared in the Sunshine State. Law enforcement agencies and the federal government began the process of dismantling a thriving drug industry on the black market by targeting doctors writing bogus prescriptions and dealers of the powerful pharmaceutical companies.
The latest tactic might prove to be the most effective in stopping the black market prescription pill industry.
The DEA and state officials are taking down the pharmacists and pharmacies that fill bogus prescriptions. In 2011, two CVS locations in Sanford, FL, were banned from carrying prescription narcotics such as Oxycontin and Hydrocodone. Pharmacists in these stories filled prescriptions they knew were bogus. Managers within the CVS stores also allowed these actions to take place.
By turning their focus to the pharmacists, the DEA hopes to convince others that the risks are not worth it. Prior to the new tactic, there was no penalty for filling prescriptions that were fake or not necessary. The defense was pharmacists were following doctors orders.
That no long applies when the pharmacists are filling orders that are clearly fake or not medically necessary. Beyond the pharmacists, the DEA is now shutting down pharmacies who repeatedly violate federal and state drug laws. Stores can now be banned from carrying narcotic drugs; a huge money maker for many pharmacies.
Shutting down pharmacies and pharmacists working with shady doctors and criminal organizations helps to stop pills at their source. By taking away locations where fake prescriptions can be filled, the goal is to reduce the ability of gangs and dealers to replenish their supplies of the pills.
The goal is to stop prescription pill use and abuse that's currently ravaging Florida's population, hopefully preventing 10,000 deaths annually.