DEA executes warrant at hospital pharmacy

December 29, 2014

Agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration recently searched records at a Virginia hospital pharmacy in connection with stolen narcotics with an estimated street value close to $1.4 million.

Agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) recently searched records at a Virginia hospital pharmacy in connection with stolen narcotics with an estimated street value close to $1.4 million.

According to an article by the News & Advance, federal agents copied thousands of pages of pharmacy records regarding dispensing, ordering, and distribution of controlled substances at Lynchburg General Hospital.

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“The warrant being served today is related to an investigation into the possible diversion [theft] of controlled prescription drugs,” Gregory Cherundolo, special agent in charge of the DEA’s Richmond District Office, told the newspaper. 

A spokeswoman for the hospital, Diane Riley, said the DEA is investigating whether the hospital pharmacy properly reported the theft of intravenous fentanyl.

An earlier article by the News & Advance reported that at least 91 vials containing two doses each of fentanyl were taken from ambulance drug boxes in the greater Lynchburg area. DEA officials estimate the street value of the drugs could range from $455,000 to $1.365 million.

By law, hospital pharmacies are required to report suspected drug theft to the DEA within one day of discovering them.

“The diversions of these types of drugs, particularly opioid analgesic drugs like fentanyl, are a public safety concern to the DEA and they contribute to a significant number of overdose cases - fatal and non-fatal - in Virginia and throughout the United States,” Cherundolo  told the newspaper. “These types of investigations are a priority to the DEA.”

 

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