WHAT IS A “PILL MILL?”
“Pill mill’ is a term used primarily by local and state investigators to describe a doctor, clinic or pharmacy that is prescribing or dispensing powerful narcotics inappropriately or for non-medical reasons.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
“Pill mill” clinics come in ‘all shapes and sizes’ but investigators say more and more are being disguised as independent pain-management centers. They tend to open and shut down quickly in order to evade law enforcement. Although the problem is nationwide with recent arrests in New York, Ohio, and Chicago, Drug Enforcement Administration officials believe the highest concentration of pill mills are in Florida and Texas.
- Accept cash only
- No physical exam is given
- No medical records or x-rays are needed
- You get to pick your own medicine, no questions asked
- You are directed to “their” pharmacy
- They treat pain with pills only
- You get a set number of pills and they tell you a specific date to come back for more
- They have security guards
- There may be huge crowds of people waiting to see the doctorFEDERAL LAW:
It is against federal law for a doctor to prescribe pain medication without a legitimate medical purpose or “outside the usual course of medical practice.” If a prescription is deemed as not “valid,” a doctor could be charged with “drug trafficking.” This is a felony with the possibility of up to life in prison. It is also illegal to practice or prescribe medicine without a license.
Defending Pill Mill Indictment Cases
Many of the federal drug trafficking lawyers on our team are former health care fraud prosecutors. With that experience they understand the tactics the government uses to build pill mill cases against doctors, dentists, nurses and health care organizations. Currently federal prosecutors are using federal drug laws designed to bring down recreational and street drug dealers to go after licensed health care professionals. Those who work in pain management clinics are of particular interest to federal prosecutors.
Due to their experience on both sides of federal laws our white collar crime defense lawyers know how to break down the government’s case against you. When defending a pill mill case it is imperative to prove that your actions were legitimate, lawful and benefitted your patient.
A strong defense against charges for violating the Controlled Substances Act includes demonstrating that the prescriptions in question were prescribed in good faith, for a legitimate medical purpose, in the usual course of professional practice, and within the accepted standards of medical practice.
The testimony of medical experts is crucial to the outcome of your pending pill mill charges. Your medical experts will review the evidence against you, the prescription records, and any opinions offered by the government’s medical experts. Medical expert testimony can bolster your defense by using evidence and specialized medical knowledge to show that you were practicing medicine in full compliance with all applicable laws. Expert testimony can be used to prove that the prescriptions were written or dispensed lawfully.
Our healthcare fraud defense attorneys feel that law enforcement agencies and prosecutors are aggressively pursuing experienced and credentialed physicians who work in the treatment of chronic pain. The aggressive nature of these investigations and prosecutions mean that innocent doctors, pharmacists, and other health care professionals will be unfairly targeted.
Our Maryland pill mill defense lawyers offer free consults and serve all of MD: Annapolis, Aberdeen, Baltimore, Bel Air, Bethesda, Bowie, College Park, Columbia, Denton, Easton, Edgewood, Elkton, Ellicott City, Essex, Frederick, Germantown, Gaithersburg, Montgomery Village, Upper Marlboro, Landover, Lanham, Laurel, Hagerstown, Hyattsville, Chevy Chase, Olney, Takoma Park, Towson, Silver Spring, Wheaton, Oakland, Salisbury, Ocean City, Perryville, Pikesville, MD.