Pharmacy Crawl Leaves Florida Patients in Severe Pain
Florida’s victory over pill mills has created a situation where patients with legitimate pain problems cannot access their medications. Prior to 2010, Florida pill mills prescribed powerful opiate-based medications to anyone with enough money. The crackdown on pill mills has created unanticipated problems for real pain patients.
Pharmacies afraid of legal and financial consequences are not filling pain medication prescriptions signed by doctors. In many cases, patients will visit multiple pharmacies, begging for medications to alleviate their pain symptoms.
The press and Florida lawmakers have referred to this practice as “the pharmacy crawl”, as patients crawl from one pharmacy to another begging for assistance. Patients unable to cope with untreated pain have committed suicide or faced hospitalization for opiate withdrawal symptoms. Other patients report being humiliated while begging pharmacists for pain medications.
Can New Policies Help Patients Avoid the Pharmacy Crawl?
Leaving patients with legitimate health conditions in severe pain goes against everything medicine stands for as a profession. Fortunately, the Florida Board of Pharmacy has approved a new rule that would train pharmacists to change their mindsets about prescribing opiate-based painkillers to patients with legitimate medical issues and prescriptions.
Pharmacists would be required to take a course that will train them to look for reasons to approve patients with proper prescriptions from doctors. For example, pharmacists would take all necessary steps to validate the authenticity of signed prescriptions. If the new plan is successful, patients who are suffering from health conditions will be able to alleviate their pain.
Shapiro Law Group – Tampa Bay Medical Malpractice Attorneys