pill mills

Two new studies add to the evidence that Florida is making progress against deaths from inappropriate prescribing of opiates since the state cracked down two years ago.

Christopher George, who is serving time for running pill mills in South Florida with his twin brother Jeff, is the state’s star witness in a case against two physicians who are charged in the deaths of nine former patients. But he made a big mistake: He disregarded the warning that all jail phone calls are recorded.

Two important health bills are headed to Gov. Rick Scott’s desk: one that provides state money to keep the prescription drug database going, and another that requires insurers to cover oral chemotherapy drugs, not just cancer drugs that are administered by IV. 

What’s the difference between a street-level dealer who gets caught with a few pain pills, and a doctor who may have written hundreds of prescriptions? According to legal observers, the street-level dealers often face long prison sentences, while the doctors who can afford high-priced attorneys might escape with just probation, the Orlando Sentinel reports.