DEA STEPS UP USE OF IMMEDIATE ORDER OF SUSPENSION (IOS) IN EFFORT TO CURB PILL MILLS

dea%20badge.jpg Healthcare providers have been subjected to increased scrutiny by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) policing the medical profession’s prescriptive and dispensing policies with respect to Schedule II narcotics, including Vicodin, Percocet, OxyContin.
The IOS — Immediate Order of Suspension — is an emergency provision of federal law that permits the Attorney General to suspend a practitioner’s license to dispense narcotics without a hearing or presentation of evidence.
Under 21 U.S.C. §§ 823824, the DEA has authority to shut down a medical provider’s practice. The IOS imposes a presumption of guilt and places the burden of establishing medical necessity on the practitioner.
Chronic pain is a condition affecting vast numbers of patients nationwide. The DEA largely misunderstands complex set of circumstances regarding the treatment of chronic pain and often times punishes health care providers for the exercise of sound professional medical judgment.
It probably goes without saying that there are unscrupulous health care providers that flaunt the law and properly fall within the scope of the statute’s broad reach. However, when there is direct physician/patient interaction, a medical history, and physical examination, it is reminiscent of Orwell’s “Big Brother” and an abuse of government power to conclude as a matter of law that such conduct is intended to skirt federal and state statutes and DEA administrative regulations.
Healthcare providers must be vigilant in properly documenting the need for administration of opioids to patients and attentive to patients’ drug seeking behavior with no evidence to support medical necessity. Otherwise, the vast reach of the DEA may find otherwise ethical and dedicated and law-abiding physicians trapped within the wide net cast upon unscrupulous providers by the government second-guessing proper medical judgment.
Healthcare Fraud Blog Publisher, Attorney Robert Malove, is an expert criminal trial lawyer as recognized by The Florida Bar. Mr. Malove has extensive experience in the area of pill mill defense. Criminal defense attorney Robert Malove represents the Florida Academy of Pain Medicine, Florida Academy of Physician Assistants, American Academy of Pain Management, and Florida Society of Neurology and has filed an amicus curiae brief in federal court challenging the constitutionality of the Florida statutes regulating the operation of pain clinics, i.e., pill mills.
If you, or someone you know is facing prosecution as a result of aggressive law enforcement activity targeting pain clinics, i.e., pill mills, make sure you hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who is familiar with the issues.
Federal Healthcare Fraud Strike Force teams are currently operating in 9 locations: Miami, Los Angeles, Houston, Detroit, Brooklyn, Tampa, Baton Rouge, Dallas and Chicago.
If you or someone you know is a healthcare provider and in need of serious pill mill defense or healthcare fraud defense, please contact attorney Robert Malove, co-author of the noted treatise,
WHITE COLLAR CRIME: HEALTH CARE FRAUD (West)(2010-2011 ed.) to arrange an immediate consultation.