A total of 32 doctors, nurses, and medical officials have been charged and accused of prescribing addictive opioids to patients. Investigations have found that there was no medical justification behind prescribing these deadly pills. The reasoning behind it all? Sex and money.
Department of Justice revealed on Wednesday that there’s over 60 medical professionals across six states being indicted. That means over half of the suspects are from all across Tennessee.
This investigation comes after the recent opioid epidemic that’s currently taking place in America.
The government is doing their best to crack down countrywide on the abuse of opioids and doctors who are illegally supplying patients with them. The number of people being supplied opioids illegally are far too high, and the government is completely aware and wants to make this change.
Amongst the 32 suspects charged, nine of them are in the Middle District of Tennessee, eight in the Eastern, and Fifteen in the Western. These numbers are made from a total of seventeen doctors, five nurse practitioners, and various other medical professionals.
One of the suspects is Darrel Rinehart, a doctor who has had at least five patients die of a confirmed overdose over the course of one short year. Rinehart had been known for prescribing large doses of deadly opioids and ignoring the signs of abuse from this patients.
Not only that, but he also failed to properly evaluate his patients. He handed out opioid prescriptions like they were candy, seemingly not having a care in the world.
Another suspect is Jeff Young, a nurse practitioner from Jackson that traded pills and fentanyl patches for sex from patients. The investigation found that over a span of three years, Young had prescribed around 1.4 million addictive opioids and 1,500 fentanyl patches.
What’s worse? An unidentified doctor from West Tennessee has allegedly prescribed over 4.2 million pills.
Opioid drug crisis
Though the opioid drug crisis is the biggest, most deadliest crisis in all of American history, some people may not know much about it.
A known fact is that every day more than 130 people in the U.S. die due to an overdose from opioids. These drugs include not only prescription drugs such as pain killers, but also illegal substances such as heroin.
The problem with opioids is that they’re extremely addictive, and even if someone is put on them for a genuine reason, it’s still very likely that they will end up becoming addicted. It’s unfortunate, but it’s a fact.
Due to the nature of opioids being so addictive, they also tend to be misused and sold on the streets. Doctors like the ones indicted today fail to realize this or simply just don’t care, so they continue to prescribe them to their patients.
So why hasn’t the government done more? It’s rather difficult to identify each doctor who’s prescribing opioids unlawfully. Although, the government has been doing its very best to crack down and eliminate this crisis as best as they can.