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Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Now Open Hillman Letter

Attorney Steven Hillman, who has been involved with several pain clinics and a pharmacy, sent a letter to Lisa Roberts, RN, of the Portsmouth City Health Department. Roberts is a prominent member of the Scioto County Prescription Drug Action Team. (Frank Lewis, "Hillman Asks To Meet With Roberts," Portsmouth Daily Times, June 18 2011)

Mr. Hillman is quoted as saying the following:

“I have become increasingly concerned that you are being identified as a source of incorrect information. I find it hard to believe that the individual that I met would ever intentionally publish false information,” Hillman writes. “I can only assume that you are receiving information about Dr. Temponeras and Unique Pain Management that is incorrect. I believe that it is past time for all concerned citizens to get on the same page about the illegal distribution of controlled substances.”

“There are sincere professionals who wish to help those in chronic pain to deal with their pain so that they can function in society,” Hillman said in the correspondence. “Innocent hardworking people are being given undeserved labels, which are adversely affecting their personal and professional lives.”

“The current law enforcement method assumed that all patients receiving pain medications are criminal abusers and their fate is not a concern,” Hillman goes on. “This goes against all medical obligations and the Hippocratic Oath.”

“I invite you and any interested persons to sit down and begin by helping Scioto County and setting a template that others can follow that will respect all people’s rights and move Scioto County towards being the leader in civil action to control its problems,” Hillman wrote. “It is not and never has been appropriate for civilized people to fight when they are really on the same side.”

“Please consider this an open invitation to meet as soon as possible,” Hillman said. “I will come to your office or meet at a place, which you select. If your motivations are as I believe then this invitation will be accepted by you and we can more forward.”

Let's see if we can break down the communication in simple terms.

1. Hillman claims Lisa Roberts has been identified as a source of incorrect information.

Does Mr. Hillman believe the Ohio State Medical Board, the Ohio State Pharmacy Board, the Bureau of Workers Compensation, the Ohio Attorney General, the Legislature of the State of Ohio, the Governor of the State of Ohio, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the President of the United States distribute the same incorrect information? He must because they do distribute the exact information.

2. Hillman claims Lisa Roberts received and published incorrect information about Dr. Temponeras and Unique Pain Management.

What, specifically, is "incorrect"? The DEA release stated that Dr. Margy Temponeras is "one of the largest dispensers of controlled substances in the United States."

Assistant Attorney General Tracy Greuel told the Ohio Board of Pharmacy that Temponeras had a former employee of the Scioto County Sheriff’s Office running her dispensary. "There is a problem if any unlicensed healthcare professional can have complete access to drugs. It's not permitted by law," said Agent Kevin Kinnear. The Sheriff’s Office has since clarified that the man in question was only a Volunteer Special Deputy from 1978-1997 under a former Sheriff. 

One must assume that this is the information that so disturbs Mr. Hillman. Lisa Roberts has no connection with the DEA or with the Ohio Board of Pharmacy.

3. Hillman claims Dr. Temponeras is a sincere professional who helps those with chronic pain.

The Ohio Board of Pharmacy denied a request by Dr. Margy Temponeras to have her license to buy, store and dispense controlled substances reinstated. The unanimous decision was made following a nearly four hour meeting in Columbus earlier this June. This decision affirms that the doctor was not operating with the best intentions.

4. Hillman claims people like Lisa Roberts gives innocent, hardworking people undeserved, damaging labels. 

Mr. Hillman does not concern himself about the damage done by pill mills. He chooses to defend the rights of those alleged to be rogue doctors and pharmacists and put their rights to distribute drugs above health concerns. Issues such as addiction, illegal distribution, and deadly overdose must play second fiddle in his band. 

5. Hillman claims that current law enforcement agencies employ methods that assume that all patients receiving pain medications are criminal abusers and that enforcement is not concerned about patients' fate.

This claim is totally ridiculous and flies in the face of increased enforcement efforts to stop crime as it relates to the deadly epidemic of rx drug abuse. With this generalization Hillman basically says "law enforcement wants to arrest all people in legitimate pain management programs, put them in jail, and throw away the key." He does a great disservice to the FBI, the DEA, the Ohio State Patrol, the county sheriffs, and the city police among others. He should be praising their brave, selfless efforts.

6. Hillman implies that those in Scioto County do not respect people's rights, and the populace in Scioto is not acting appropriately to lead civil actions and to control its own problems.

In the last two years, the citizens of Scioto County have risen up and taken a huge stand against rx drug abuse. Their grass roots efforts have captured the attention of the area, the state, and the nation. There is no need to list all those responsible for this people's rights movement. The groups and individual players are well known. Every day others around the country look to Scioto County for help with their rx drug problems. Many of these people seek the help of Lisa Roberts.

7. Hillman places the onus of accepting an invitation to meet and "set a template that others can follow"on Lisa Roberts.

This ploy is posturing by Mr. Hillman. He is trying to deceive others and to impress them by offering HIS version of an "olive branch" to Lisa Roberts. By saying "if your motivations are as I believe then this invitation will be accepted by you," he is attempting to ally his intentions with Roberts' intentions to make it look as if they are "on the same page about the illegal distribution of controlled substances." They are not on the same page. Roberts has no intention of meeting Mr. Hillman to discuss HIS version of pain managment. HIS version of pain management is pill mill pain management. Nothing positive could come of that encounter.

Evidently, Attorney Steven Hillman does not know Lisa Roberts as well as he thinks he does. She and the many others in the Scioto Rx Drug Task Force are not willing to take a step backwards while kowtowing to his efforts to whitewash wrongdoings. Federal, State and local agencies have uncovered much of the rx drug abuse malignancy that has devastated Scioto County, and now, thanks in large to the media, the public is witness to the deadly operations.

Hillbillies we may be, but we detest those who would judge us as ignorant and who would attempt to use us. In fact, the Appalachian character shows great distrust at the first hint of deceit. And, most Billies will defend their right to protect their own with all their might. Perhaps Mr. Hillman would like to reside in Scioto County and experience firsthand the terrible effects of the pill mills. I think he may need a new perspective that would be conducive to learning a thing or two.

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