If you are like many people, you see several doctors sometimes to treat your various conditions. You have your primary care physician (PCP) that you see for general health and well-being. You may have also consulted with a podiatrist for an issue with your feet and perhaps an orthopedist about getting that bum knee replaced.
Any or all of the above may have legitimately prescribed you opioid drugs for pain control. For convenience, you may have filled them at different pharmacies close to the doctors’ offices or your workplace. You might also have paid cash if your insurance denied payment. That’s no big deal, right?
It certainly could be.
Beware of doctor-shopping charges
You should know that there are some people who make a living and/or feed an addiction via doctor shopping. That term refers to seeing multiple providers in order to obtain additional or similar opiate-based and other scheduled drugs like Xanax. They then sell them on the black market for many times their value or take excessive amounts and risk a fatal overdose.
You may argue that was never your intent, that you were simply abiding by each doctor’s orders in filling each prescription and taking each dose. While that may be true, under this Texas statute, you could be in violation of the law against doctor shopping.
What the law states
In our digital era, everything is connected. When you see a doctor using your insurance, there is a record of that, as well as any prescriptions you’re given to fill. Red flags pop up when an individual obtains controlled substances from multiple providers. You could face arrest and conviction.
Remember that ignorance of the law is not a valid defense. Each physician you see should ask you to list all the medications that you are currently taking. If you are truthful and the doctor is reputable, that alone should be a sufficient safeguard to avoid over-prescription of scheduled drugs.
Could you be caught up in a wide net of prosecution?
It is indeed possible. If you fear facing charges of doctor shopping in Texas, it’s prudent to learn more about the relevant criminal laws that could affect your future.