We at Fairwinds Treatment Center are seeing firsthand the effects of the prescription drug crisis currently underway in the United States, with more and more Americans abusing these medications and finding themselves in the depths of serious addictions. We've previously discussed the issue and how it is leading a growing number of young people down the path to heroin abuse on this blog.
The Internet has only exacerbated the prescription drug problem, helping abusers and addicts readily find ways to obtain their substance of choice without going through a licensed medical practitioner. We hope that our society will do everything it can to curb this steady flow of unmonitored drugs, so we were pleased to hear that the federal government is attempting to crack down on illegal online pharmacies and the legal corporations that wittingly or unwittingly help them.
A grand jury recently indicted one of the nation's largest shipping and delivery companies, Federal Express (FedEx), saying it has been delivering prescription drugs for illegal Internet pharmacies. According to the indictment, FedEx has ignored repeated government warnings over the last decade that their services were being used to distribute controlled substances to online shoppers.
"The advent of Internet pharmacies allowed the cheap and easy distribution of massive amounts of illegal prescription drugs to every corner of the United States, while allowing perpetrators to conceal their identities through the anonymity the Internet provides," U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag said in a press release. "This indictment highlights the importance of holding corporations that knowingly enable illegal activity responsible for their role in aiding criminal behavior."
The indictment states that FedEx may have made as much as $820 million shipping often-abused prescription medications such as oxycodone and hydrocodone.
FedEx denies any wrongdoing, and says that whenever it was given the name of a pharmacy accused of shipping controlled substances, it cut off that business' shipping privileges, The Wall Street Journal reports. The company is vowing to defend itself in court.
Regardless of whether or not FedEx deliberately trafficked in unapproved drugs, we hope that the indictment will help staunch the flow of such substances. These medications can be highly addictive, and here at Fairwinds we know all too well the toll they can take on vulnerable individuals and their friends and family members.
If you or someone you love are struggling with an addiction to prescription drugs, heroin or another substance, Fairwinds Treatment Center can help. Since Dr. M.K. (Khal) El-Yousef founded the center 25 years ago, he has been helping patients achieve recovery and their families find healing. Fairwinds' unique dual diagnosis methodology treats a person's addiction from the inside out, addressing chemical dependence and any underlying, undiagnosed psychological challenges that may have caused or contributed to their abuse of drugs or alcohol.