Florida Governor Declares Victory Over Pill Mills

It's been a year since law enforcement agencies in Florida began to crack down on "pill mills" that were responsible for the widespread distribution of prescription painkillers like oxycodone (marketed under the names OxyContin, Roxicodone and Oxyfast). This week, Governor Scott is calling the efforts of regional law enforcement teams a success, with 213 pill mill clinics shut down in the past year. The Governor also stated that nearly half a million pills were taken off the streets and more than 2000 drug-related arrests were made. Despite this impressive arrest record, Florida still appears to have more work to do in ridding itself of its prescription drug problem. The number of statewide deaths from prescription drugs dropped only 8 percent between 2010 and 2011. Prescription drugs still kill more people than illegal drugs in the state.  Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi admits that Florida still has a long way to go in the fight against prescription drug abuse. By 2010, Florida had earned a reputation as the nation's center…

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CVS Blacklists Florida Doctors Who Write Too Many Painkiller Prescriptions

In a move that could set a nationwide precedent, CVS recently sent letters to a group of high-prescribing Florida doctors advising them that the company’s pharmacies will no longer fill their prescriptions for painkillers and other dangerous drugs.  According to the Orlando Sentinel, the action has been described as blacklisting by some of the doctors and at least one doctor who received a letter has responded with legal action against CVS. In a prepared statement, CVS stated that it informed a small group of Florida doctors that their prescriptions for Schedule II narcotics will no longer be filled.  The company was not specific about how many doctors have been notified but stated that the action was taken in the interest of keeping controlled substances out of the wrong hands and preventing drug abuse.  CVS operates more than 700 pharmacies in Florida. Due to a lack of prescription regulation in Florida, pain clinics have sprouted up throughout the state that freely dispense prescriptions for addictive prescription drugs like oxycodone (OxyContin)…

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Florida’s Oxy Express

Florida has become ground zero for the prescription drug epidemic in America.  In communities like Fort Lauderdale, once a popular tourist destination and yachting center, drug dealers have set up shop in strip mall “pain clinics.”  Instead of selling crack or heroin, these dealers are pushing powerful prescription drugs like oxycodone, a narcotic painkiller that is marketed under the names OxyContin, Roxicodone and Oxyfast.  The pain clinics, referred to as "pill mills" by law enforcement officials, make it easy for addicts to obtain powerful prescription narcotics. National Public Radio recently reported that doctors in Florida write 10 times as many prescriptions for oxycodone as all the other U.S. states combined. Florida pain clinics operated by disreputable physicians attract people from all along the eastern seaboard.  A typical visit to one of these clinics consists of a quick exam and a prescription for a painkiller like OxyContin.  Many clinics are also equipped to fill prescriptions.  Drug addicts and dealers who sell oxycodone on the street are able to walk out…

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