The recent news that dozens of medical professionals across the U.S. had been charged for allegedly participating in a scheme to illegally prescribe millions of pain medications rocked the medical world. Among those facing federal charges are doctors, nurses and pharmacists, news reports stated.
The state of Tennessee was especially hard hit, with indictments naming 32 medical professionals from all corners of the state. Indictments are spread across seven states, where prosecutors allege that defendants were involved in writing more than 350,000 illegal prescriptions.
Prosecutors announced charges against 60 medical professionals in Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, Louisiana, West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania. “If these medical professionals behave like drug dealers, you can rest assured that the Justice Department is going to treat them like drug dealers,” a federal prosecutor said.
Among those charged here is a Tennessee nurse practitioner accused of prescribing opioids and other addictive substances without justification. Also indicted: a Tennessee doctor who works in Jackson, about 90 miles northeast of Memphis.
Two other Jackson doctors and a nurse practitioner there were charged with conspiracy to distribute and dispense controlled substances and unlawful drug distribution and distributing a controlled substance resulting in death or serious bodily injury.
Two doctors and a nurse practitioner in Bells are accused of unlawfully distributing and dispensing a controlled substance. A pharmacist and pharmacy tech in Bells are both charged with unlawfully distributing and dispensing a controlled substance and one count of conspiracy.
The charges not only threaten their careers, but also their freedom. Before they discuss these allegations with a prosecutor, they should talk over their legal options with an attorney experienced in criminal defense.