A New Port Richey medical detox facility is expressing concern about the practice of using telemedicine to prescribe drugs.
Novus Medical Detox is an in-patient medical facility that offers alcohol and drug treatment programs. The facility sent out an email to the media with its thoughts on a recent Florida Trend article on telemedicine programs.
“The article specifically states that an agency is using telehealth devices to screen for depressive symptoms in patients – telemedicine would prescribe depression and highly-addictive medications without the requisite of seeing a doctor or performing medical/biological testing,” the release states.
Prescription pill addiction is a major problem in Pasco and Pinellas Counties.
Novus is warning that many of those who might be receiving prescription depression or pain medications via telehealth are employees with company insurance policies and the telemedicine program makes it too easy for people to get prescription drugs," the release states.
“’Many employees don’t want to use their sick days; and with this new procedure becoming popular, people can call up, tell the doctor their symptoms, and get a prescription over the phone… no visit needed” Kirk Burness, Executive Director of Novus Medical Detox, said in the press release.
“With pain medications being so addictive, this is potentially very dangerous.”
Novus feels that easy access to telemedicine could increase the chance of addiction.
“People need medical care that is based on sound medical testing and visits to one’s doctor – not telehealth where potentially addicting drugs can be prescribed willy-nilly,” Burness said in the release