A Manchester pharmacy technician accused of drug diversion has voluntarily surrendered her license. A Tullahoma physician assistant is also guilty of unprofessional conduct, according to the Tennessee Department of Health.
The department issued today its monthly report of disciplinary actions taken by the health-related boards.
Manchester Pharmacy Technician Sabrina Gilliam is guilty of drug diversion. Gilliam has voluntarily surrendered her license, according to the department of health.
Drug diversion means that prescription medications are obtained or used illegally.
Drug diversion puts patients at risk for healthcare-associated infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Healthcare providers who steal prescription medicines put patients at risk, according to the CDC.
Addiction to prescription medicines is a major driver of drug diversion, according to the CDC.
According to the department of health, it is unlawful for any person or firm to possess, sell, barter or give away any drug known as “legend drugs,” defined as items that federal law prohibits dispensing without a prescription from a licensed doctor, dentist, optometrist or veterinarian.
It is unlawful for any person to have in his or her possession legend drugs without the same having been prescribed by a duly licensed physician, certified physician assistant, dentist, optometrist or veterinarian, and having been dispensed by a licensed pharmacy.
It is also unlawful for any person knowingly to acquire a controlled substance by misrepresentation, fraud, forgery or deception.
Tullahoma Physician Assistant
Physician Assistant Lisa Anne Wilson Gressel, of Tullahoma, is guilty of unprofessional conduct; dispensing, prescribing, or otherwise distributing controlled substance not in good faith to relieve pain and suffering, or not to cure an ailment, physical infirmity or disease.
Her license has been placed on probation for 12 months. She also has to pay a civil penalty of $4,000.00 plus the costs of prosecuting this case.
Drug diversion has been a growing problem and to curb it, the Drug Diversion Task Force was created. The Task Force aims to help combat the abuse and trafficking of prescription drugs. Doctors, physician assistants, and pharmacists may be involved in the illegal distribution of controlled substances, including oxycodone, oxycontin, morphine, methadone, fentanyl, hydrocodone, and xanex, according to the United States Department of Justice, Task Force members work to identify, investigate and prosecute the illegal sources of prescription pills. Members of the Task Force include the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Office of the Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit, the Tennessee Department of Health, private health insurers and health care providers.