Dialogue Volume 15 Issue 1 2019 | Page 9

FEATURE DIVERSION OF PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION HOW TO MINIMIZE YOUR RISK A pharmacist alerts you that she has re- ceived a suspicious looking prescription for 100 OxyContin pills with you named as the prescriber. After you confirm that the prescription was not issued by you, you may be left wondering what your next step should be. Diversion of prescription medication can occur in many ways such as drug theft, the selling of legiti- mate prescriptions, and prescription theft and forgery. The problem is difficult to quantify, because so many instances either go undiscovered or unreported. There are indications, however, that diversion is a serious problem. For example, Health Canada data reports that nine million doses of controlled substances — most of them opioids — were reported missing between Jan. 1, 2012, and Sept. 30, 2017. The number of pills, patches and packages reported missing has steadily increased each year since 2013. The problem is such that the Ontario Provincial Po- lice has full-time staff dedicated to waging war on those who commit prescription drug diversion. OPP Det.-Const. Chris Auger of the Prescription ISSUE 3, 2018 DIALOGUE 9