It appears that the new priority agenda for the Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation (MBI) in Orlando is busting pain clinics, or rather those doctors that do little more than sell prescriptions for oxycodone. It is an admirable agenda as Florida has a serious overdose problem and attracts addicts from across the southern US on pill-seeking missions. This drug is the new heroin just in case you're wondering what epidemic I am referring to here.
Today the MBI busted a so-called “pain management” clinic about 2 blocks from where I lived for a couple of years and it's about time someone did something. Of course the real culprit is big pharma for manufacturing so much of this drug. Surely these pharmaceutical companies knew what they have been profiting from, right?
State databases are often inaccurate on the drug overdose toll. A friend's (Dusty from Memoirs) boyfriend died with enough of this drug in his system to kill a horse back in early 2003, but I do not believe that anyone was bothering to keep track back then. Tom was originally prescribed this drug for back pain, but in short time the original problem was all but forgotten. My friend just dated him and had no idea how far his addiction had gotten; they didn't live together. In her own investigation, she located the doctor that had been prescribing Tom's pills and pursued prosecution, and Tom was far from alone, but she met only with resistance from any potential prosecuting authorities, including the State of Florida.
Back in 2003, the problem was swept under a rug and proliferated quickly. Tom's death was one of the earlier deaths and the first time I had heard about the prescription pain med problem in this state. So while I appreciate that the State of Florida and the MBI have taken notice the last year or two, this should have been a main agenda before Tom's death. Instead they were all busy going after people like me that abhor big pharma. How many died because they chose to pursue escort business operators and escorts instead of pill-mill fronts like the one busted today? How many are addicted today as a result of Florida's prescription drug epidemic that should have been derailed so long ago?
Make no mistake: These pain pill addicts are capable of just about anything to obtain their drugs, so real crime proliferated side-by-side with the pain med addiction and overdose problem. It really is the new heroin in the US, and the traffickers and doctors prescribing it should have been pursued a decade ago. Great agenda, but too little and too late in my opinion.