Introduced earlier this month, The Stop Trafficking of Pills Act, or STOP Act, sets its sights on decreasing prescription drug trafficking and “doctor shopping” in Ohio by limiting Medicaid recipients to a single doctor for the extended duration of his/her treatment when receiving medication of high-risk prescription drugs, such as Oxycontin and Percocet 30. The new bill which seeks to create a “lock-in” program for Medicaid beneficiaries resembling legislation of other states who battle lofty prescription drug trafficking crime rates, for example Florida and North Carolina.
Florida’s nationally recognized “Pill mill” problem forced the state to adopt more stringent rules on pain-treatment plans and increases penalties for doctors who are charged with over-prescription of prescription drugs among other serious consequences related to the illegal sales of pharmaceutical drugs. Both Florida and North Carolina claim to have seen a dramatic decrease in prescription drug trafficking since tightening its regulations on all persons receiving high-risk medications, and it appears that Ohio is heading in a similar direction.
In an effort to reduce prescription drug trafficking crimes in Columbus and throughout the state, Ohio STOP Act would amend title XIX (Medicaid) of the Social Security Act (SSA) to require state Medicaid plans to identify prescription drugs that present a high-risk of misuse or overutilization, limit a patient to a one physician when obtaining a prescription drug as well as have an exclusive pharmacy to receive physician-prescribed medications, and limit the amount of times a patient may obtain to a high-risk prescription drug to no more than once every 20 days. The new law also requires identification of potentially excessive dosage levels and persons who have been convicted of a drug-related offense, among other requirements of prescription drug disbursement from medical professionals.
Needless to say, obtaining large doses of highly concentrated prescription drugs may become much more difficult for those on Medicaid in Ohio and possibly for everyone in the future. With increased limitations also come increased chances for breaking the law. Protect your rights if you have been or become accused of doctor shopping, illegal possession of prescription drugs, prescription drug trafficking, or any other prescription drug crime in Columbus by contacting Joslyn Criminal Defense Law Firm. As a Columbus prescription drug crime defense attorney, I will fight for you. Call (614) 444-1900 to schedule a free consultation. I have helped hundreds of men and women accused of crimes and I want to help you.