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Connecticut Pharmacies Pay $90,000 to Settle Allegations under the Controlled Substances Act

DEC 11 (NEW HAVEN, Conn.) - John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that HOWE'S PHARMACY of Milford and NELSON'S PHARMACY of Naugatuck have each entered into a civil settlement agreement with the government to resolve allegations that they violated civil provisions of the Controlled Substances Act.  Howe's Pharmacy has agreed to pay a total of $50,000 and Nelson's Pharmacy has agreed to pay a total of $40,000.

The allegations against Howe's Pharmacy, located at 78 Broad Street in Milford, include claims that pharmacists filled prescriptions without exercising their corresponding responsibility to ensure that the prescriptions were issued for a medically appropriate reason, failed to verify that prescriptions issued for Schedule II controlled substances contained the signature of a prescribing physician, failed to ensure that a filled prescription contained the DEA number of the authorizing medical practitioner, filled a prescription for "office use" rather than issuing a prescription to an identifiable person and, in several instances, filled a postdated prescription.

The allegations against Nelson's Pharmacy, located at 153 Maple Street in Naugatuck, include the failure to insure that prescriptions it filled contained an authorized practitioner's DEA number, and the failure to account for accurate inventories of Oxycodone 10 mg. tablets, Oxycodone 15 mg. tablets, Oxycodone 30 mg. tablets and Endocet 10/325 tablets.

Congress, with the passage of the Controlled Substances Act, took steps to attempt to create "a closed system" of distribution for controlled substances in which every facet of the handling of the substances, from their manufacture to their consumption by the ultimate user, was to be subject to intense governmental regulation. This mission was taken against the backdrop of trying to prevent the diversion and abuse of legitimate controlled substances while at the same time ensuring an adequate supply of those substances needed to meet the medical and scientific needs of the United States.

This investigation was conducted by investigators from the Drug Enforcement Administration's Office of Diversion Control.


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