What is a pill mill?

On Behalf of | Jan 25, 2024 | Professional License Issues |

The term “pill mill” is sometimes used in reference to pharmacies or doctor’s offices. It talks about a medical professional who is over-prescribing medications. According to some definitions, the pharmacy or office is a pill mill if it “engages in the non-therapeutic dispensing of drugs, when there is no valid medical need to do so.”

In some cases, doctors will get kickbacks or make more money by writing these prescriptions. But even if they do not receive direct financial compensation, overprescribing drugs intentionally could still lead to licensing issues and could even cause a pharmacist or doctor to lose their license entirely.

Why is this such a big issue?

There are strict rules about how doctors and pharmacists can distribute medications because of the opioid abuse epidemic in the United States. Many people use painkillers and other medications recreationally. But they’re not allowed to buy these medications without a prescription.

There are those who buy street drugs, of course, but others will seek out doctors who will write fraudulent prescriptions or pharmacists who will keep filling prescriptions when they should not. Sometimes, these individuals are trying to sell the medication to a third party. But they may also be using these medications themselves, and the pill mill helps to fuel this addiction.

Have you been accused of violating the law?

All that being said, a pharmacist or a doctor could be accused of violating these drug laws when they don’t believe they did anything wrong. Maybe they believe it was an innocent mistake. Maybe they think there was a valid reason to distribute those medications. Since these allegations can have such a major impact on a medical professional’s future and career, it is quite important for them to know about all of the legal licensing defense options that they have.