The United States has been battling an opioid epidemic for almost 25 years. Tragically, each year, instead of decreasing, the number of fatalities continues to increase – more than 15,000 people died in this country from prescription opioid overdoses in 2021. Part of the fight against this battle is targeting prescribers and other medical professionals who are involved in prescription fraud.
Prescription fraud may involve any illegitimate procurement of prescription medications. The penalties for anyone accused of prescription fraud may not only involve the loss of their professional license, but they could also face criminal charges.
Types of Prescription Fraud
There are two different types of prescription fraud that could result in a loss of a professional license and potential criminal charges. The first is when a medical professional, someone who works with a medical professional, or a patient obtains a medication using deceptive means. These individuals are often struggling with an addiction and are seeking out the medication for their own use.
Some of the activities that individuals may engage in to obtain drugs include:
Altering a legitimate prescription
Stealing a prescription pad
Creating fake prescriptions
Impersonating a doctor by using a false callback number
Although it is an individual who is committing these illegal acts, if a pharmacist fills the prescription knowing it is fake, they could also face serious consequences with the Illinois Board of Pharmacy.
The second type of prescription fraud involves a doctor who issues medically unnecessary prescriptions. They may do so in order to provide illegitimate drugs to a patient in exchange for money, or they may write prescriptions to obtain the drugs for themselves. When this is taking place, there are certain signs that often trigger an investigation against the doctor, including:
Prescribing multiple medications for one patient within a short period of time
Prescribing large quantities of medications at once
Prescribing many more medications than the average physician
Prescribing medications for a patient that should not be taken together
Contact an Illinois Professional License Defense Lawyer
A prescriber could have legitimate reasons for any of the above scenarios, yet they may find themselves in the middle of an investigation for prescription fraud by the Illinois Board of Medicine. Pharmacists may also face investigations by the Illinois Board of Pharmacy. If you are a medical provider or pharmacist who has received any type of notification of an investigation for prescription fraud, do not delay in contacting Williams & Nickl, LLC to speak with a qualified Cook County medical license defense attorney. Failure to defend yourself against these charges could not only impact your medical license, but you could also face criminal prosecution. Do not delay in calling 312-335-9470 to schedule a free and confidential consultation.