The issue of writing prescriptions using an alias has entered the spotlight following the overdose death of acclaimed musician Prince last year. A doctor allegedly wrote prescriptions using a different name to safeguard Prince’s identity. This unfortunately is a more common practice than one might suspect, and pharmacists must be wary.
I first encountered this type of situation while in charge of the pharmaceutical unit at the Cincinnati Police Department in the 1990s. It was on a local level, so the so-called celebrity would have been unknown to anyone outside our area but was considered an icon locally. We served a search warrant on the pharmacy for a variety of potential criminal offenses and, in searching the pharmacy, discovered a ledger that detailed the filling of prescriptions for this local celebrity under a false name and address. [Read more…]