DEA Does It Again

Perhaps for the first time in my career a pharmacist just called to ask me about a prescription for oxycodone presented to her pharmacy that I did not write. This comes after more than eight years of writing for buprenorphine (Suboxone). Until a few months ago I ordered all prescriptions by telephone or fax, but after my routine audit DEA advised me to stop faxing prescriptions based on their trumped up claim that my signature was "electronic" and thus pharmacies should not take it as valid. When the local DEA office informed me of this I immediately began printing prescriptions for controlled substances, including me DEA number, on the new state mandated special paper and handing them to patients suffering from addiction.

I'm surprised it took this long.

DEA's irrational insistence on "going by the book" in its approach to the so-called war on drugs will continue to fail, or worse, until Michelle Leonhart resigns or until she injects some common sense into the operation. Fast tracking eprescribing of controlled substances would not hurt either. In the meantime the practice of requiring the DEA number on prescriptions should be abandoned.

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