Three Florida women, each personally and tragically affected by South Florida’s “pill mill” crisis, have banded together to try to close down rogue pain clinics. Their organization, STOPP (Stop The Organized Pill Pushers) NOW, is doing everything in its power to shut down Florida’s pill mills and ban oxycodone in all but the most dire medical situations.
Broward County is known as one of the easiest places to obtain oxycodone, a highly addictive, frequently abused, and sometimes fatal painkiller. Everyday, dozens line up in front of the county’s 130 pain clinics (commonly referred to as “pill mills”) to get the drug. Pill mill opponents argue that these sham clinics prescribe and dispense millions of prescription pills for little or no medical reason.
While prescription drug abuse is a problem throughout the nation, Florida is particularly hard hit by the epidemic. On any day in Florida, an average of seven people die from a fatal prescription drug overdose. STOPP NOW complains that lax regulation over the years led to Florida’s pill mill problem, and that buyers from neighboring states frequently travel to Florida to easily obtain prescription drugs. According to the Miami Herald, “in the first half of 2010 alone, doctors in Florida doled out nine times more oxycodone than in the rest of the entire United States during the same time frame.”
Florida legislators, law enforcement, and the Attorney General are working together to put an end to the state’s pill mill problem. One tool proposed by Attorney General Pam Bondi is to create a database to track prescription drug sales. The Attorney General and law enforcement believe that a database would help to identify prescription drug abusers and the doctors who inappropriately, and in some cases illegally, prescribe painkillers. Florida Governor Rick Scott opposes the database for privacy reasons.
Our personal injury law firm frequently represents injured people who have a lot of pain after an accident. Those injured in car accidents, for example, should be particularly careful with painkillers and should only take drugs prescribed by a reputable doctor. Many who develop a prescription drug addiction, do so after a traumatic or painful injury.
If you experienced ongoing pain after an accident, contact the Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys at Anidjar & Levine. To schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced Florida injury lawyer, call 800-747-3733.