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DEA to Conduct Pharmacy Diversion Awareness Conference in Cumberland County to Address the Diversion of Prescription Opioids and Link to Heroin Abuse
Event will take place on August 27, 2016

AUG 25 (PHILADELPHIA) –Special Agent in Charge Gary Tuggle of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Philadelphia Division announced today that the DEA will host a Pharmacy Diversion Awareness Conference (PDAC) in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania as part of the DEA’s mission to address prescription opioid and heroin abuse. 

The diversion of pharmaceutical controlled substances, specifically prescription opioids, is a growing problem.  This diversion stems from various sources.  In addition to pharmacy robberies and thefts, pharmaceutical controlled substances are often diverted by way of forged prescriptions, doctor shoppers, or illegitimate prescriptions from rogue practitioners.  The PDAC is designed to assist pharmacy personnel in identifying and preventing diversion activity. 

“Eight out of 10 new heroin users started by abusing prescription opioids,” said Tuggle, who advised that there were 3,383 fatal drug overdoses across Pennsylvania in 2015 – an increase of 23.4 percent from the total number of overdose deaths reported in 2014.  “Speaking with pharmacy personnel about the link between the non-medical use of prescription opioids and heroin abuse at the PDAC is a key component of the DEA’s mission to protect the public from the scourge of illegal drugs.” 

The PDAC is a free training offered to pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, and loss prevention personnel employed by pharmacies, hospitals, and clinics that are registered with the DEA.  This training will be held on August 27, 2016 at the Radisson Hotel Harrisburg located at 1150 Camp Hill Bypass in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Members of the media wanting additional information or to attend the PDAC are asked to contact DEA Public Information Officer/Special Agent Patrick J. Trainor at either (215) 852-8740 or


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