In Pharmaceutical Pill Pushers Confidentially
has launched a toll-free international hotline to report the illegal
sale and abuse of pharmaceutical drugs. People
now will be able to provide anonymous telephone tips about the diversion
of prescription drugs into the illegal market by individuals and suspicious
Internet pharmacies. In addition, such information can be reported online
through the DEA Webpage.
Abuse of certain prescription drugs -- controlled substances such as pain killers and performance enhancing steroids -- has become an increasingly widespread problem in the United States, leading to dangerous abuse, addiction and sometimes fatalities. The 2003 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports 6.3 million persons currently use prescription medications non-medically.
“DEA is particularly interested in hearing from families whose
loved one has overdosed or died as a result of obtaining pharmaceuticals
over the Internet. Tips including the Web addresses will help us put
these pill pushers out of business,” Tandy stated. Anonymous reports
will be taken at 1-877-RxAbuse or can be made online at www.dea.gov by
clicking on a link and filling out an electronic form.
DEA’s prescription drug abuse hotline is up and running. We expect callers will provide leads that will help root out offenders and shut down their illegal operations. But our work doesn’t stop here. We are also meeting with citizen groups, health professionals, businesses, civic leaders, and educators across the country to let the American public know that prescription drugs are dangerous when misused and potentially fatal. This is a critical message for America’s youth,”the Administrator added.
In March of this
year, DEA, the Office of National Drug Control Policy, the Food and
and the Surgeon General announced a
coordinated, comprehensive plan to address the problem of prescription
drug abuse as part of the President’s 2004 National Drug Control
Strategy. This prescription drug abuse hotline is one piece of