With the drug crisis circulating throughout West Virginia, restrictions with providing opioids have changed over the years.
For Raleigh County resident Patrick Simms, everyday has become a battle after getting hurt in a car accident and now he’s not able to get the pain relief he needs. “It’s because of what abusers and idiots have done to this state and the medical profession, it stopped me from receiving the medicine I’m prescribed, I can’t even receive my medicine,” Simms.
Simms said in order to fight the pain he travels to Virginia to get his pain prescriptions filled because of the heavy restrictions on opioids here in the mountain state.
As a pharmacist for over 30 years, Keith Foster has worked at Colony Drug Pharmacy for over a decade and said he’s seen how filling pain medications for patients has changed over the years. “Before it was really relying on the doctor’s expertise and now I feel like I should make that decision,” said Foster.
The longtime pharmacist said it’s the pharmacies that have become a target and that’s why he makes sure his patients are legitimate. “I’ve developed a very stringent program that all my patients go through,” said Foster.
Foster requires three documents to be signed by the patient, doctor and chronic pain suppler before filling any pain medication. This way Foster knows his patients aren’t abusing the medications. “We do a sit down with each and every patient and go through two pages of questions to make sure they are needing this for a legitimate patient,” said Foster.
Foster said it’s sad it has come down to this but hopes West Virginia can pull together. “We all have to take a big part in making sure these people get what they need and use it correctly,” said Foster.