The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that approximately 10,000 people die each year from overdoses of prescription pain medications. The Colorado Drug Injury Lawyers with McDivitt Law Firm point out that the high rate of accidents associated with these drugs has led to regulations that doctors must follow before prescribing these powerful medications to patients. Failure to follow these guidelines can result in both criminal and civil penalties.
The CDC says that in order to prevent deaths and injuries resulting from painkiller overdoses, doctors should always:
- Be vigilant for substance abuse and mental health issues.
- Prescribe only the amount and dosage of medication needed.
- Utilize Patient-Provider agreements and urine testing to prevent long-term use.
- Educate patients on proper use, storage, and disposal.
- Avoid combinations of painkiller and benzodiazepine prescriptions.
A story from 9 News stated how a doctor from Craig, Colorado, was recently charged with crimes stemming from distributing pain medication to patients at dosages and quantities that could cause patients to become addicted. Reports indicate that at least two individuals died as a result of overdoses of medications prescribed by the doctor.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office accused the doctor of signing blank prescriptions so that other employees could distribute medications to patients while he wasn’t in the office.
McDivitt Law Firm’s team of Colorado Personal Injury Lawyers urges those harmed by prescription medications to discuss their legal rights with an attorney.