My classmate Avi Viswanath posted a great article on Bioethically Speaking on the “pill mill” industry in Florida. Pain-killer drug addiction is a big problem in the U.S., and Florida has become the hub for easily-obtained drugs. In my own training, I encountered “Pez dispenser” physicians who gained the reputation as the “go-to” guys for medications like diet pills. In one instance, a diabetic woman came to the office asking for diet pills that her primary care physician of many years would not prescribe her. My attending, without preforming a physical exam, prescribed the pills. Twice while I was training there, pharmaceutical reps came by for 20+ minute visits. They seemed to be very friendly with the physician.
Read more about the physician-led “pill mill” drug industry at tamhscbioethics.wordpress.com.