Newport News Pharmacy Agrees to Pay Civil Penalty under the Controlled Substances Act
NORFOLK, Va. – Hidenwood Pharmacy, Inc., located in Newport News, and its owner, Anne Hutchens, of Seaport, have agreed to pay $125,000 to settle civil penalty claims stemming from alleged record-keeping violations associated with controlled substances.
The government alleged that the Hidenwood Pharmacy failed to comply with various recordkeeping requirements under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) mandated for Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registrants who handle controlled substances. The alleged violations included the failure to validate DEA registrations, resulting in prescriptions being dispensed under invalid or incorrect DEA numbers; failure to maintain records of distributions with the required information; failure to maintain a current self-certification in violation of the Combat Methamphetamine Act of 2005 and to provide documentation of employee self-certifications; failure to display the warning notice regarding pseudoephedrine purchases on the electronic signature device; and failure to maintain a system to detect orders of unusual size or frequency.
The recordkeeping requirements under the CSA are designed to protect the health and safety of the public from dangers posed by highly addictive or dangerous controlled substances, such as opioids, being diverted into the illicit market, while also ensuring that patients have access to pharmaceutical controlled substances for legitimate medical purposes. In a separate agreement with the DEA Washington Division's Diversion Group, Hidenwood Pharmacy agreed to take a number of measures to prevent the violations from reoccurring.
The resolution obtained in this matter was the result of a coordinated effort between the DEA Washington Division's Norfolk Resident Office and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. The matter was handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Clare Wuerker. The civil claims settled by this agreement are allegations only; there has been no determination of civil liability.