Kansas Professional Licensing Attorney Discusses How Kansas Pharmacists’ Association Is Ready And Willing To Help Practitioners Suffering From Substance Abuse

Kansas Pharmacists Association recognizes that pharmacists, like doctors, dentists, and lawyers, are susceptible to becoming addicted to drugs or alcohol. To the uninitiated, learning that a doctor or a pharmacist became addicted to drugs or alcohol sounds incongruent. After all, if anyone should know that abusing drugs is unhealthy, the professionals who understand the effects drugs have on the human body should be at the top of the list of people who would never abuse drugs. Doctors and pharmacists are human and can easily fall into the trappings of drug abuse. Drug abuse can lead to misconduct, malpractice, and even criminal behavior. Kansas professional licensing attorney Danielle Sanger has represented numerous individuals facing professional discipline caused by substance abuse.

Pharmacists tend to use the drugs that are available to them rather than purchasing street level narcotics. One pharmacist wrote about his experience with abusing pharmaceutical drugs soon after he commenced his professional career. This pharmacist, Jared Combs from Lexington, KY who is a recovering addict, describes how he suffered for 11 years with an addiction until he finally got help. Mr. Combs stated that he took mood-altering drugs to combat stress in the new profession. He says he’s not alone among pharmacists. Mr. Combs’ research determined that forty-six percent of pharmacists have taken a prescription drug without a prescription. Meanwhile, sixty-two percent of pharmacy students used prescription drugs without a prescription. Finally, twenty percent of practicing pharmacists used prescription drugs without a prescription more than five times in their career. A recent study showed that approximately one out of every seven pharmacists would suffer substance abuse during their lifetime.

Mr. Combs is now a recovering addict. He related that wasting four years of his life and being arrested on two occasions brought a harsh reality upon him. Mr. Combs got clean and sober with the help of the Kentucky Pharmacists Association Recovery Network. Mr. Combs is grateful for the benefit of a second chance.

Kansas Pharmacists Association (KPhA) also has a recovery network dubbed “KsPRN.” The mission statement of KsPRN is to help pharmacists and pharmacy interns recover from substance abuse and mental health problems one step at a time. KsPRN’s goals are succinctly stated. The network’s goals aspire to protect the public and preserve the public trust, provide resources to people who need it, provide pharmacists and interns education on substance abuse, as well as encouraging voluntary participation in the program.  KsPRN encourages participants to seek treatment for their addiction issues and rehabilitate themselves through the program. KsPRN desires to protect the public from pharmacists and interns who cannot perform the necessary functions of a pharmacist. However, the program cannot work unless KsPRN maintains the anonymity of its participants.  KsPRN boasts that many of its participants continue to work while recovering from addiction.

KsPRN offers services related to treating addiction among its members. KsPRN educates pharmacists on prevention of drug dependency and impaired practice, education on how to recognize dependency, referrals to programs and associated costs, as well as help with personal and professional issues. KsPRN’s services are anonymous. Pharmacists’ participation in the program will not be reported to the Kansas Board of Pharmacy unless the pharmacist fails to follow the recommendations put forth by KsPRN.  While KsPRN has not promulgated statistics on recovery, one study showed that eighty-seven percent of pharmacists who entered similar programs completed them successfully and returned to work.  A significant component of the treatment plans involves relapse prevention. Consequently, treatment programs are structured to identify and prevent relapse among participants.

Seek Immediate Help From KsPRN if you are a pharmacist suffering from addiction

Contact Kansas Professional Licensing Defense Attorney Danielle Sanger if you are facing disciplinary action as a result of your substance abuse. She can help get you get your life back together. Call Attorney Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a consultation.