What is "doctor shopping"?

What is "doctor shopping"?

asked 08 Mar '12, 17:41

JaneSays's gravatar image

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The lack of prescription drug monitoring in states like Florida and Texas make it easy for people to abuse pharmacies and doctors. Illegitimate pain clinics are popping up in strip malls and make-shift offices, offering hundreds of prescriptions a day to whoever wants "pain relief". People can literally "shop" for pain pills and never have to leave the state.

(09 Mar '12, 18:03) Jack ♦


Drug Abuse

People doctor shop to gain access to unnecessarily large quantities of narcotics.


Prescription Drugs

Doctor shopping aims to collect as many prescriptions for drugs as possible.

Here is an example: In one day, Jim goes to six physicians, all located in the same city. At each one, Jim complains of severe back pain and chronic discomfort, asking for some kind of help. Each physician prescribes Jim pain killers (Oxycontin, Percocet, etc.), unaware of any care Jim already received that day. Jim then goes to six different pharmacies and fills each prescription one by one. Just like that, Jim has successfully "doctor shopped" and now has six-times the amount of pain killers recommended for someone with legitimate pain (oh, and chances are, Jim actually has no pain at all).


answered 09 Mar '12, 14:53

aLtErEdSTATE's gravatar image

accept rate: 3%

The state of New York recently approved I-STOP, a new and improved Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) aimed to combat "doctor shopping" and illegitimate prescribing practices. The new e-prescribing system forces health care professionals and physicians to consult the PMP Registry before writing prescriptions for "controlled substances that are most prone to abuse and diversion." This will completely eliminate paper scripts.

Pharmacists will even be able to consult the PMP Registry before dispensing the prescriptions, and all data will be in real-time, so doctor-shoppers aren't able to move faster than the updated data. New York's e-prescribing will be the most advanced form of PMP in the country.


answered 28 Aug '12, 19:46

admin's gravatar image

admin ♦♦
accept rate: 100%

This came up in the Signs of Prescription Drug Abuse discussion.

Doctor Shopping is when you go to multiple doctors with the same complaints, to try and get more of the meds prescribed. There are ways to do it so the doctors don't know about each other, although that is getting harder to do in state that have prescription drug monitoring programs.

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Asked: 08 Mar '12, 17:41

Seen: 3,656 times

Last updated: 11 Apr '14, 20:12