The government is here to protect us once again

Here is a article from the CHARLESTON GAZETTE

The headline seems rather benign…Senate bill aims to increase drug import safety

but when  you read down into the meat of the matter

Manchin’s amendment, co-sponsored by Rockefeller and three other senators, would reclassify painkillers such as Vicodin and Lortab as Schedule II drugs, which also affects how they are to be stored and prescribed.

For instance, patients would need an original prescription for refills, hydrocodone pills would need to be transported and stored more securely and traffickers would be subject to increased criminal penalties, according to a news release from Manchin’s office.

Who really thinks that INCREASED CRIMINAL PENALTIES are a real concern to diverters and those who are addicts to drugs ?

Where I temp – one of the largest LTC pharmacies – a corporate edict came down last week.. from legal, DEA and god knows who else… that we are no longer allowed to call a prescriber for a verbal Rx.. it has been determine that it is considered solicitation of business that is paid by a Federal program (Medicare/Medicaid/Fed employee.. This is going to be a fun transition… when we tell the LTCF nurse that he/she needs to tell the prescriber to call us… non-negotiable !

It also came down… that pharmacies are no longer to send the prescriber a partially or fully filled Rx for controlled Rx whose refills have expired or ran out for the prescriber to sign. Although in the DEA’s letter they acknowledged that the patients in these facilities  “…are often frail with multiple illnesses…”


The DEA does allow a pharmacy to send a “reminder letter” to the prescriber with all the pertinent data points about the patient and medication needed… hopefully the prescriber and/or staff reads/acknowledges the faxed letter and responds appropriately… of course everyone in the field is going to suffer especially the patients who need pain or anxiety medications…

I have work in/around the LTC  industry for some 30 odd years.. and the only things that have changed is the names and faces.. the same problems remain.. I won’t elaborate.. those of you who have worked in the industry will understand…

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