Local pharmacist discusses opioid distribution

A local pharmacist is speaking out in light of national reports that exposed drug companies' role in the opioid crisis.

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WVEC) -- A local pharmacist is speaking out in light of national reports that exposed drug companies’ role in the opioid crisis. 

Scott Newman, owner of Newman Pharmacy, said a pharmacist’s role in policing patients has gotten a bit tougher.

“More and more we’re being held accountable for prescriber habits,” said Newman. “That’s tough to police when the expectation for us and our job is to, you know, move volume.”

National reports surfaced that the Drug Enforcement Administration has taken fewer actions against opioid distributors. In response, Newman said local pharmacies face plenty of regulations.

“It’s certainly easier to come in here and you know audit my books and my documentation and you know, slap me on the wrist than go after the drug companies that are pushing this stuff, said Newman.

Newman said he and other pharmacies are responsible for things like checking patient databases, flagging suspicious patients and constantly counting inventory. However, he said regulations should be fairly applied to the entire industry.

“I still have to take care of the patients when it’s appropriate,” said Newman. “I don’t believe that anyone in the whole supply chain should have any less scrutiny than anyone else but we’re the easy ones to do. We don’t have the power or the lobbying or the money to keep them off of us.”

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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