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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Prescription drugs have become a threat. That’s the message from law enforcement officers today. They came together to talk about a new law that could affect your next trip to the pharmacy.

Harold King has been a pharmacist for more than 20 years. Over the years he has denied prescriptions to people who have a history of pharmacy shopping.

“Once you start checking, it is very amazing what you see,” King said.

During a news conference at the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office Thursday, the SBI said there’s been a 400-percent increase in prescription drug investigations in the past five years. That’s why there’s a new state law that mandates pharmacists must check IDs before handing over certain controlled substances, including prescription drugs like hydrocodone, oxycodone, even adderall.

“The diversion of prescription narcotics and the illegal use of prescription narcotics is the number one drug problem in America now,” SBI Special Agent in Charge Donnie Varnell said. “More than cocaine, more than heroin, more than marijuana.”

Law enforcement officers say last year, 1,000 people across the state died from prescription drug overdoses.

District Attorney Ben David hopes this new law will limit the availability of these drugs being sold illegally.

“What we’re trying to make sure is that the supply is only getting to people who have a doctor’s prescription,” David said. “We don’t want drug dealers using our pharmacies as the next marketplace.”

Pharmacists must keep these records for three years, so they will be available in case someone is investigated for doctor shopping.

The types of identification you can use include a driver license, a North Carolina issued ID card, a passport or military ID.

Comment on this Story

  • GuestVader

    Does anybody really think this is going to work? Why should a pharmacist have to take on this new responsibility? Would prescriptions that are filed away not serve the same purpose? This will be like Sudafed, there are dozens of ways around the rules and regs. Looks like business for internet sales and fake IDs is about to pick up.

  • Sharecropper

    Will somebody think to ask the question, regarding requiring IDs to get habit-forming drugs: if your spouse is an invalid, and you have to take and pick them up for her, how does that work? Betcha the pols, and Ben David for that matter, never considered this, and it is very serious.

  • Das Weibstück

    Its your spouse, you have an ID with the same last name and address? Carry her ID along with you too. Pharmacies are aware people are sick and cant get to the store.

  • Cassie

    I have a big problem with this. My elderly mother lives with me and I have to pick up some of her meds when she is too sick. We do not have the same last name. I do not have any of the required ID’s and do not think I should be forced to get those ID’s. Have you ever thought about the only people who are numbered are prisoners and slaves? So, now I will not be able to purchase a prescription that I’m entitled to for myself because there are drug abusers? God help me if I ever become seriously ill. I guess I just don’t exist and btw, I’m not an illegal alien. I’m a native of the Republic of North Carolina, not the State of North Carolina.

  • Guest Reply

    “You will need an i.d. now” Cassie with all respect to your Mother…and by the way…you do have a Social Security # don’t you? If so…you are numbered.
    Here’s one of the benefits this new rule imposes. The PA’s (physician assistants) and their supporting doctors as well…will be watched more and more by the FDA on how they prescribe pain meds. and quantities. And yes…there are those in that field that write out whatever the patient wants. This is coming as well…Once where there was the HIPAA rule where doctor #1 couldn’t call doctor #2 and see what they had written out to patients they treat and share…to see if they are going from doctor to doctor to get what they want, will be cross referenced. This process will soon be networked and this should have been done years ago. Doctors “can now” call a pharmacist and ask what meds “their patient” has been prescribed in order to prevent over medicating someone on certain drugs…any drugs…not just “Controlled or Narcotics”…but those have become the “BIGGIES”.
    The patients insurance companies paying a percentage for all these meds from different doctors are as much to blame to help create addiction in “some people” unless they see where they have had them filled before. This isn’t a matter of opinion…it’s a fact. If their insurance carriers won’t pay…patients will pay “out-of-pocket”…but have no illusions here either…a Pharmacist can (and has the right) to refuse distribution of any meds that either interact in a negative way…or see where this patient has had the prescription filled at another pharmacy. The Pharmacist are held accountable as well…they just don’t hand out meds because a piece of paper says it OK.
    The “Drug Society Providers” have a way of setting themselves up for a major “take down”…and this is one prime example. Have no illusions…it has all been driven by the God Oh Mighty Dollar at the price of addiction in some patients!
    Another added and positive fact…doctors will now have to disclose what financial benefit they have come to know from Drug Reps convincing physicians to prescribe “or hand out” their latest meds. Nothing comes free without a price…at least now it won’t in regards to hand out meds. Urine test will soon become the “Norm” as well at the doctors discretion…and the doctor won’t pay for it…the patient will.
    Back to the case in point…get a legit i.d.!

  • Das Weibstück

    If you ever get in an accident no one will know who you are. Cant believe in this day and age that you have no i.d. Whats “the Republic of North Carolina”??

  • Guest 123

    Asked my wife as she works in a pharmacy. Her answer…you only need your license for i.d. to pick up the meds. even for your spouse. This rule is long over due. A temp. license will work as well. Fact!
    Next time call your pharmacist for real answers and do not second guess.

  • Das Weibstück

    Right, as of now……but this is a new law being considered so the current law doesn’t apply for this NEW LAW being discussed.


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