Reporting Requirements for Lost or Stolen Controlled Substances or Prescription Forms Reporting Obligations for Illegal Use of Your DEA Number
Physicians may be confronted with a situation where either a patient or an employee illegally uses the physician's DEA number to call in an unauthorized prescription for medication or illegally uses the physician's blank prescription forms to obtain controlled substances. This is to provide some guidance to physicians on steps to take once they have become aware their DEA number has been stolen or is being used illegally.
Health and Safety Code Section 11368 states that anyone who forges or alters a prescription or who obtains any narcotic drug by a forged, fictitious, or altered prescription may be punished by imprisonment in the county jail or state prison for not less than six months or more than one year. Since prescription forgery is considered a criminal offense, it is recommended that a report be made to the local law enforcement.
Federal law requires physicians to report theft or loss of controlled substances and official Federal Order Forms (Form 222) to a regional office of the Drug Enforcement Administration. The DEA has offices located in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco and the office addresses and phone number are available through their Web site. In addition, the DEA has their reporting forms available online at the following link: http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/21cfr_reports/theft/index.html.
While neither the Medical Board nor state law requires that a report of stolen or illegal use of the physician's DEA number be made to the Board, it is our recommendation that physicians provide the Medical Board with a written narrative of the circumstances and the actions taken by the physician to have on file. This information is valuable to the Board as it is not unusual to receive complaints from pharmacists or law enforcement officers regarding concerns about physicians' prescribing practices. If a physician has already reported that he/she has experienced a problem related to the illegal use of his/her DEA number, the Board already has been provided with background information on the problem. The written narrative should be provided to the Medical Board of California, Central Complaint Unit, 2005 Evergreen Street, Suite 1200, Sacramento, CA 95815. If you have additional questions or concerns, please contact the Central Complaint Unit through the toll-free number at 1-800-633-2322.
In addition to the above, if the physician is aware of the theft or loss of the tamper-resistant prescription forms, the State Department of Justice, Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement must be notified. To report the theft or loss of the new tamper-resistant prescription forms, Form JUS MUST be completed. Please complete all applicable fields on the form and forward the form to: California Department of Justice, Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement, CURES Program, P.O. Box 160447, Sacramento, California, 95816, FAX: (916) 319-9448. If you have additional questions or concerns regarding lost or stolen tamper-resistant prescriptions forms, please contact the CURES Program at (916) 319-9062.