Oxycodone is a powerful pain killer. Found in such brand names as OxyContin and Percocet, the opioid is among the most commonly abused prescription drugs in the United States. Sadly, the word “Oxycodone” has become synonymous with drug overdoses. This is because of its highly addictive nature.
“Many people who abuse Oxycodone start out by taking a prescribed amount — but as their body develops a tolerance to the drug, they need a higher dose to maintain the same relief or high,” explains AddictionCenter.com, “The transition from use to abuse to addiction can be quick and dangerous. Oxycodone is a powerful drug and offers much-needed relief to many people struggling with painful or terminal conditions; as such, it can be hard to stay in control.”
Recognizing that someone has an addiction to Oxycodone could help save his or her life.
Oxycodone abuse presents very real dangers. Not only can it lead to expensive and debilitating addictions, but the affects of abuse are deadly. In many a blog, we have highlighted the fact that our nation suffers from a horrific opioid epidemic. When drugs like Oxycodone are illegally prescribed or used for recreational purposes, it only serves to worsen the already-awful crisis we are enduring.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, between 1999 and 2019, nearly 500,000 people died from an overdose involving any opioid, including prescription and illicit opioids. The CDC goes on to note that the initial rise in opioid overdose deaths can be attributed to the increased prescribing of opioids in the 1990s. Overdose deaths involving prescription opioids have been growing since that decade.
People like Habib Geagea Palacios are not helping the opioid crisis.
As reported by the Southern District of Florida branch of the United States Department of Justice last week, the 40 year-old Miami man has pleaded guilty to unlawfully distributing opioids. According to the DoJ report, Palacios owned a cash-only pain management clinic in Miami, Florida named General Care Center, Inc. At this clinic, he paid doctors to prescribe opioids to nearly all of the patients who visited the clinic.
General Care Center illegally distributed over two million tablets of Oxycodone 30 mg. The illegal prescriptions generated more than $3 million in cash. They money was deposited into various bank accounts associated with both the clinic and Palacios. In addition to his guilty plea, five doctors, who worked at the clinic, have already pleaded guilty in connection with their unlawful prescribing practices there.
“Palacios pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and one count of distributing a controlled substance,” reports the DoJ, “He is scheduled to be sentenced on January 26, 2022 at 11:00 a.m. and faces a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.”
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