Suspected pill mill raided in Ironton - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Suspected pill mill raided in Ironton

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The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigations, along with several local agencies, raided Pinnacle Wellness and Longevity on South 3rd Street in Ironton.

It's part of an investigation into whether doctors there are unnecessarily prescribing pills, and contributing to the pill addiction epidemic.

Investigators seized several boxes of patient records, and onlooker, Jewel Reed says she saw it coming.

"I pretty well knew what was coming down," says Reed. "There were quite a few people coming and going the one other time I was here."

Police also questioned patients one-by-one as they arrived for their scheduled appointments, unaware of the raid.

No one has been arrested, and the business was not shut down.

Officials say this is just one phase of an investigation that has been going on for a year.

"We're investigating allegations around the prescribing issues, and the pill issues that have unfortunately plagued this area," says special prosecutor, Matthew Donahue, of the Ohio Attorney General's Office.

Patient, Rosanna Wescott tells us she depends on the controversial drug, Suboxone, to keep her off Oxycontin.

She says she's one of the good patients, and is upset that she may have to go elsewhere for her prescriptions.

"There's not that many doctors that will take a new patient," says Wescott. "Most doctors are full."

Mr. Donahue stressed in our interview that the business can continue to operate, as authorities were executing a search warrant, not an arrest warrant.

He also says copies were made of the patient records seized by investigators, and left at the business.

This raid comes just after Ohio Attorney General Mike Dewine joined 47 other attorneys general to urge the Food and Drug Administration to make generic pain pills harder to abuse.

Together, they are asking the FDA to adopt standards requiring manufacturers and marketers of generic prescription painkillers to develop tamper-and abuse-resistant versions of their products.

Also joining Dewine are Attorneys General Patrick Morrissey of West Virginia and Jack Conway, of Kentucky.

"Some producers of name-brand versions of painkillers have taken steps to make it more difficult to abuse their drugs, and we are hoping the makers of the generic versions will do the same thing," says Attorney General DeWine in a press release issued Tuesday.

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