Full article: Characteristics of doctor-shoppers: a systematic literature review

The abstract and poster of this study were presented at ISPOR Europe 2018, 10–14 November 2018, Barcelona, Spain. Definitions of doctor-shopping in the studies identified are presented in Table 3. Overall, 2885 records were identified in PubMed and 48 in the grey literature, out of which 43 were included in the qualitative synthesis. Patterns of abuse among unintentional pharmaceutical overdose fatalities.

While selecting a doctor is a time-consuming and tedious process, it’s not illegal. Today we’re sharing what you should know about doctor shopping, including the legal repercussions of getting caught and the signs to look out for in a loved one. As a result, many people have turned to doctor shopping as a means to acquire more pills. The NIDA study also found that doctor shoppers tend to be younger adults between the ages of 18 and 44 years old.

At October Road, we offer a wide range of programs that focus on specific addictions, including prescription drug addiction. While movies and TV shows would like us to believe that people with addiction are always abusing street drugs, millions of Americans are addicted to the legalized medications they’ve been prescribed by their doctors. Our team has worked with countless patients who have become addicted to prescription drugs, including painkillers and depressants.

Doctor shopping

One of the big reasons doctors are “loath to challenge patients” is the stigma sometimes felt by people with a genuine need for some of these prescriptions. For example, a person with a real need for narcotic painkillers might feel hesitant about asking for a prescription if a physician challenges him or her about the pain he or she is feeling. One common scenario is for those suffering from an illness or injury to visit their current doctor, explain their symptoms, and request a prescription for pain medication. As clients leave the doctor’s office, they’re met by a person who has set up shop outside the medical office.

what is doctor shopping

Study published in 2010 found that opioids were responsible for 12.8 percent of all prescriptions involved in multiple physician visits. Benzodiazepines were the next controlled substance prescribed at 4.2 percent, followed by stimulants at 1.4 percent and anorectic weight-loss medications at 0.9 percent. Doctor shopping is a kind of malingering with the specific goal of procuring prescription drugs. Malingering is underdiagnosed, often because of the physician’s fear of making false accusations. Covert surveillance has indicated that as many as 20% of pain clinic patients misrepresent the extent of their disability. The judgment of the morality of malingering is largely a matter of the observer and circumstances.

If the Doctor Shopper Is a Family Member

The statute is most often used when people are accused of seeking prescription opioid pain relievers such as Percocet, Percodan, OxyContin, Roxicodone, Vicodin, Duragesic, and Actiq. However, it can also apply to benzodiazepines such as Valium, Xanax, Halcion, Ativan, and Klonopin. Attempting to procure any medication with an addictive potential can result in criminal charges.

what is doctor shopping

Doctor shopping is a dangerous practice—aCanadian studyshowed that almost 40 percent of patients who died from an overdose had received prescriptions from three or more doctors the year before their deaths. Prescriptionopioid abuse increasedin the 1990s when doctors began to prescribe painkillers more frequently and synthetic opioids like oxycodone came on the market. From 1995 to 2011, emergency room admissions for opioid abuse grew to 10 times the previous level as the drugs were prescribed more and more often. Doctor shopping occurs in a small percentage of opioid users, and involves seeking out prescriptions from a number of different doctors for the purpose of obtaining larger amounts of the drug in order to abuse it. Health care providers commit the offense and violate Health & Safety Code HS when they write prescriptions for controlled substances that are not issued for legitimate purposes. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Factors affecting the rate of doctor-shopping

During physical exams, physicians may check for signs like needle marks that indicate a drug habit. In conclusion, doctor shopping is a problematic issue that has been on the rise, and it’s a serious addiction that requires treatment to overcome. If you or your loved one is struggling with an addiction, there are many resources that you can use to help you overcome your addiction. At Granite Recovery Centers, we help provide the best and most effective treatment available.

Prescriptions can provide legitimate medicines for legitimate needs. Granted, one should seek out the best physician to fit ones’ needs. Butdoctor shopping to fuel an addictionmakes a different matter. If a doctor refuses to fill a prescription for you, they likely have a good reason for doing so. Diversion programs allow the individual to attend an inpatient rehab or similar program instead of serving prison time.

Why do judges sentence 1,000 years?

Sentencing laws vary across the world, but in the United States, the reason people get ordered to serve exceptional amounts of prison time is to acknowledge multiple crimes committed by the same person. “Each count represents a victim,” says Rob McCallum, Public Information Officer for the Colorado Judicial Branch.

However, the Uniform Narcotic Drug Act of 1932 and the Uniform Controlled Substances Act of 1970 are federal laws that have set some national provisions for doctor shopping. While all forms of doctor shopping entail multiple visits with a clinician, the patient rationales for these excessive utilization patterns may vary from physician-related factors to patient-related factors. On the one hand, doctor shopping may simply be related to office factors, clinician characteristics, communication concerns, and/or patient illness characteristics.

The Attorneys at Ceja Law Firm Help Those in Houston Who Have Been Charged with a Crime Such as Doctor- or Pharmacy-Shopping

When people are addicted to a prescription drug, they may build up a tolerance as a result of prolonged use, resulting in them needing to take more of the drug to achieve the same high they had before. As a result, they may be seeking ways to get their hands on more of the drug. Although the preceding definitions of doctor shopping indicate some eco sober house rating variability, all entail the requirement that multiple providers are sought by the patient. When people go to fill their prescription at the pharmacy, they may not realize that the pharmacy team can pull up a history of controlled substance fills. This includes all controlled substances filled at different pharmacies and by different doctors.

  • The first step towards recovering from your addiction is to seek professional help.
  • Covert surveillance has indicated that as many as 20% of pain clinic patients misrepresent the extent of their disability.
  • Definitions of doctor-shopping in the studies identified are presented in Table 3.
  • Physicians, pharmacists, and lawmakers are constantly attempting to find ways to reduce the practice of doctor shopping.
  • Without a referral, seeing a specialist might be difficult or impossible.

In some cases, doctor shoppers may also obtain a prescription for a medical device that can be used to help relieve pain. Doctor shopping isn’t limited to narcotic pain medications, even if this is the most common reason for doctor shopping. Pain medications aren’t the only things doctor shoppers will go after, even though they may be the most sought after. Doctor shoppers may also seek out and obtain prescriptions for antidepressants, sedatives, muscle relaxers, and stimulants.

Doctor Shopping

Finally, Hassan et al11 examined 442 family-medicine outpatients using face-to-face interviews and determined that 56 percent met their criteria for doctor shopping. Overall, findings indicate broad variability in the percentages of patients who doctor-shop. Again, these percentages may be partially moderated by investigators’ definition of doctor shopping, characteristics of the patient sample, and/or the study setting. Doctor shopping entails the scheduling by patients of office visits with multiple clinicians for the same agenda, either for a continuing illness or to procure prescription drugs illicitly. As expected, the explicit definitions in the literature vary considerably, with a significant proportion focusing on a given illness episode.

What are the 7 abused drugs?

  • (1) Central Nervous System (CNS) Depressants. CNS depressants slow down the operations of the brain and the body.
  • (2) CNS Stimulants.
  • (3) Hallucinogens.
  • (4) Dissociative Anesthetics.
  • (5) Narcotic Analgesics.
  • (6) Inhalants.
  • (7) Cannabis.

Because doctor shopping is a clear indication of drug abuse or addiction, it may be helpful for you to recognize the signs if you’re feeling worried about a family member or friend. It can be challenging to know whether your loved one doctor shops if you’re not tracking their visits, but there are some specific signs to be aware of. Frequently involved in prescription fraud are narcotics, stimulants, barbiturates, benzodiazepines, tranquilizers and other psychoactive substances manufactured for use in legitimate medical treatment.

What are the California laws on prescription fraud?

According to the available literature, prevalence rates of doctor shopping vary widely, from 6.3 to 56 percent. However, this variability is partially attributable to research methodology, including the study definition of doctor shopping as well as the patient sample. Importantly, not all doctor shopping is driven by suspect motivations. Although you may https://rehabliving.net/ hear this term and think it refers to the process of selecting a physician for one’s health problems and insurance plan, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. When people doctor shop, they attempt to obtain multiple prescriptions or controlled substances from multiple healthcare practitioners without the doctor knowing about the other prescriptions.

Whether you’re addicted to Valium, Adderall, Xanax, or something else, you can trust our team to treat you with respect and without judgment during your time with us. Doctor shopping is the practice of visiting multiple physicians to obtain multiple prescriptions. It is a common practice of people with substance use disorders, suppliers of addictive substances, hypochondriacs or patients of factitious disorder and factitious disorder imposed on another. A doctor who, for a price, will write prescriptions without the formality of a medical exam or diagnosis is known as a “writer” or “writing doctor”.

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