In today’s society it has been found that there are many illegal drugs. Each particular drug is known to cause or produce a unique effect upon a person. Not knowing effects or causation can lead to dangerous side effects. In order for the government to regulate the use and handling of drugs Congress passed a bill “The Controlled Substance Act” (1) in order to establish a system to classify drugs. There are five categories which have been created by the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) used in categorizing drugs. These categories are: I. In this instance the drug has a high potential for abuse and has no
Current acceptability in the use of medical treatments Examples of this substance include Heroin. LSD, Marijuana and Methaqualone (21 US C 811) II. In this instance the drug or substance has a high potential for abuse but Currently has a medical use or is acceptable with treatment. It must However be used with severe restrictions. Abuse of drug can lead to dependency. Examples of this substance include morphine, Phencyclclidine, Methadone and Methamphetamines’ (21 US C 811) III. In this instance the substance has less potential for abuse and is Accepted in medical use and treatment.
Abuse is low. Examples of this would be Codeine Hydrocodone with aspirin or Tylenol (21 US C 811) IV. In this instance the drug or substance has a low abuse potential and Has an acceptable medical usage. May cause a limited dependency Examples of this would be Darvon, Talwin, Valium and Xanax In this instance the drug has a very low dependency rate and potential For abuse is minimal. Examples of this would be cough medicines with codine (21 US C 811) The placing of these substances was based on the medical use, potential for abuse, and safety or dependency of the drug.
The penalties for use of illicit drugs could be quite high no matter what the amount has been found on a person. Such penalties could include paying high fines and Illicit Drugs 3 Conducting some type of community service, to having to spend serious time in jail. This does not include the damages you may cause to your home life and to the people around you, friends families etc. The problem of illegal or illicit drugs has been around throughout the ages from the Vikings usage before major raids to the North American Indians usage for their vision quests.
As well many drugs are used today for medical purposes. Despite the knowledge we have found that many of these drugs are harmful, society as a whole still tolerates them and in some cases glamorizes them. In the media we see sports stars using steroids to better their playing capabilities. Also we here musicians using drugs to enhance their capabilities. We also here of everyday people abusing over the counter medicines as well as prescriptions. Another major problem of abuse lies within prescription drugs, those distributed by both the pharmacy and the Doctor.
In some instances as stated by Peter Stark (USA Magazine)(3) many doctors and pharmacists divert prescription drugs to those who abuse them. Abuse of these drugs is as serious and profitable as abuse of illicit drugs. This action taken by these people is not as difficult as it may seem. Prescription forgery is a major source of Pharmacy abuse. A copy from an existing Doctors pad or creating a fictitious identity is used and then the forger visits several pharmacies around the area filling the same prescription over again many times.
Another method the pharmacy can do to obtain illicit drugs is by selling an unlimited quantity of drugs then Illicit Drugs 4 Use blank forms to create fictitious prescriptions in the names of legitimate physicians and patients from existing files. By covering the illegal sales with fake prescriptions for apparently legitimate people the pharmacist can make drug sales to these abusers virtually undetectable by investigators. (4) Not only are Pharmacists apt to do this but there are doctors who are willing and knowingly supply prescriptions to abusers for fees.
It has been seen that the Drug Enforcement agency and various states attourny’s have prosecuted and revoked the licenses of many medical doctors each year for drug activities. (5) Cases have included doctors selling prescriptions in bars or writing numerous prescriptions at one time for the same patient. With these numerous prescriptions spread out among different pharmacies, the activity could go unnoticed. With this wide range of situations the problem arises with the need for the legitimate patient.
Solutions to these problems are not simple, however in many areas a tried tested solution that seems be working is a program of accountable prescriptions for doctors. In this solution all prescriptions for controlled substances must be written on a state issued pad preprinted with the authorized doctor’s name and serially numbered so they will be accountable to the individual they are prescribing for. The patient gives it to the pharmacist who keeps a copy and sends the specific information to a monitor station.
Everybody now who is in any charge will be held accountable for any wrong doings or displacement. Illicit Drugs 5 We have to do everything possible to keep illegal drugs out of the country and out of the hands of the abusers. We have to try and persuade people not to start. We have to create a zero tolerance for these illicit drugs. As well we need to aggressively make an effort to identify, prosecute and imprison serious offenders, that being users, sellers or doctors who supply these drugs.
We must be able to send out a message that drugs no matter controlled or not can be very dangerous and very hazardous to ones health. As well in many cases the usage is unacceptable. Punishing users of all illicit drugs that was not supplied or obtained in the proper fashion, that being prescribed by your family or medical physician, should be penalized according to amounts of the substance they have in their possession. In cases where it is not a large amount the person should be fined arrested or possibly forced to give up their drivers license for a specific amount of time.
A message must be sent out that these illicit drugs are not acceptable and that something is going to be done. Since it will probably be next to impossible to stop the flow of all drugs a message in hopes to make them less appealing should be put forth. Citations The Controlled Substance Act section 201 of act (21 US C 811) Druglibraryorg Peter Stark US Taxpayers Are Funding Prescription Drug Abuse USA Today Magazine July1991 Cynthia Cotts “The Pushers in the Suites” The National August 31-September 7 1992