This is a letter to the head of the DEA Diversion Investigation and Control, Administrator Michelle Leonhart.
I sincerely hope some of you will write your own - do it now as the matter is at hand. Also you can sign a petition at this site, so just click this link: http://www.change.org/petitions/stop-physicians-pharmacy
Dear Ms. Leonhart:
As of December, 2011, we, the citizens of Scioto County, have been successful in our grass roots efforts to shut down the last of 10 illegal pain clinics (Pill Mills) that recently blighted our county. A couple of years ago, Scioto County had the dubious distinction of being the first county in the United States to declare an Rx Drug Public Health Epidemic.
Thanks to the efforts of local groups such as The Scioto County Rx Drug Task Force, SOLACE, Fix the Scioto County Problem of Drug Abuse and concerted efforts by health officials, law enforcement, city council, county commissioners, rehabilitation services, private businesses, colleges, schools and many other concerned citizens, we have made a strong statement about the necessity of ending drug abuse in our Appalachian home.
We have supported and cooperated with state and federal officials and offices such as the governor, the attorney general, the DEA, the FBI, the Internal Revenue Service, the Appalachian Regional Commission, state representatives and senators, the state pharmacy board, and the state board of physicians to help pass
House Bill 93 and to insure effective operations will continue to stop drug abuse.
Our movement strongly supports simple principles:
A. “Teamwork makes the dream work.” We support all active efforts to stop the epidemic of drug abuse in Scioto County.
B. People (including physicians, pharmacists, dealers) involved in the illegal drug trade are not welcome in Scioto County.
C. People who insist on being involved with the business of illegally prescribing, selling, or distributing drugs in Scioto County will be found and brought to justice.
Our adjacent neighbors to the north in Pike County have been one of our important“brothers in arms” with the movement. We in Scioto County understand the problem of drug abuse is not isolated, and we know the importance of strengthening the rest of our state and the rest of Appalachia. Unless this unification is accomplished, all of us who reside nearby will suffer the evil consequences.
We understand Piketon Mayor Billy Spencer needs our continued support. Physicians Pharmacy, proposed by Mike Concerta and business partner Steven Hillman, a Columbus attorney, may soon be open for business in Piketon. Mr. Hillman has represented several pain clinics around the state, including former Pill Mills in Scioto County.
Rightly so, Mayor Spencer, through the social media, has asked for help. If Physicians Pharmacy opens for business, one more Pill Mill will operate illegally in Ohio. The pain, suffering and death that accompany these businesses leave permanent scars that never heal. Scioto County knows this; we have suffered this fate; and we will continue to fight to stop the madness created by Pill Mills.
We understand Mr. Hillman has said the pharmacy would be in operation like other pharmacies, to fill all types of prescriptions. And, last year, Hillman said pharmacist Larry James of Columbus would be the pharmacist dispensing the medications. We do not believe this is a “typical pharmacy.” It is a Pill Mill.
We urge you, Ms. Michelle Leonhart, to deny the opening and operations of Physicians Pharmacy in Piketon, Ohio. We understand you, as DEA Administrator, will soon be making a decision about this matter. We also ask that the DEA's Office of Diversion Control make a recommendation that Physicians Pharmacy be denied the right to open. Thank you.
Administrator Michelle Leonhart
8701 Morrissette Drive
Springfield, VA 22152
Deputy Assistant Administrator
Deputy Assistant Administrator