ASHEBORO N.C. – The U.S. Department of Justice announced that a federal court entered a consent decree with Asheboro Drug preventing the pharmacy from dispensing controlled substances and ordering the business to pay $300,000 in fines.
The consent decree, a type of agreement and court order, comes after an investigation found that pharmacists filled prescriptions in violation of the Controlled Substances Act. According to a press release by the DOJ, Asheboro Drug and its pharmacists cooperated with the government’s investigation and agreed to pay the $300,000 civil monetary penalty and be bound by the consent decree of injunction. The injunction entered by U.S. District Judge Catherine C. Eagles of the Middle District of North Carolina prohibits the defendants from filling certain “red flag” prescriptions and requires the defendants to fill other orders only after receiving documentation justifying the prescriptions.
The complaint alleged that the pharmacists dispensed, prescriptions for dangerous combinations of drugs known to be sought by drug abusers and which significantly increase the risk of overdose; filled high-dose opioid prescriptions on a long-term basis; and filled prescriptions for patients who appeared to have “shopped” for doctors willing to prescribe controlled substances.
The complaint also alleged that the pharmacy also dispensed, at times, the same or similar prescriptions for multiple members of the same family, refilled prescriptions early without justification, and turned a blind eye to prescriptions from doctors who repeatedly wrote suspect prescriptions.
No information was available in the press release regarding the doctors mentioned and if any investigation or action had been taken against them. Randolph News Now is attempting to reach out to DOJ officials for more information.
“Opioid addiction and abuse continue to devastate North Carolina communities,” said U.S. Attorney Sandra J. Hairston for the Middle District of North Carolina. “Pharmacists play a key role in preventing diversion of controlled substances, and they have a legal responsibility to ensure that the prescriptions they fill are legitimate. Our office will continue to pursue dispensers and prescribers who fail to live up to their obligations under the Controlled Substances Act.”