Telehealth Company Accused of Fraudulent Prescriptions in $100m Adderall Scheme

A San Francisco-based telehealth company allegedly prescribed controlled substances to people who did not need them, leading to the arrest of two top-ranking executives. 

Fraudulent Adderall Prescriptions

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The leading executives of online telehealth company Done Global Inc. were arrested on Thursday on suspicion of fraudulently prescribing addictive prescription stimulants for profit, according to federal prosecutors. 

40 Million Pills

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Done Global allegedly sold more than 40 million Adderall pills and other controlled substances under the guise of medical necessity. They had been doing this since the pandemic.

Providing Easy Access to Stimulants

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US Attorney General Merrick Garland has accused CEO Ruthia He and clinical president David Brody of working together to “provide easy access to Adderall and other stimulants for no legitimate medical purpose,” according to the federal press release. 

Arrested in California

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Both men were arrested in California – He in Los Angeles and Brody in San Rafael – according to the U.S. Justice Department.

Worsening Pharmaceutical Shortage

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Not only were the pair accused of committing healthcare fraud but also of worsening an ongoing shortage of Adderall and other controlled medications, that have restricted legitimate medical patients from accessing them.

Popular During the Pandemic

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The company, which was operating out of San Francisco, gained popularity in 2020, as more customers turned to online suppliers for prescription medication. Customers could gain Adderall prescriptions by paying for a monthly Done prescription. 

Exploiting Looser Laws

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Done Global was able to take advantage of looser rules around telemedicine that were introduced during the pandemic when it was more difficult for patients to get in-person care from their GPs.

More than $100 Million Made

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Altogether, He and Brody were able to generate more than $100 million in revenue through fraudulent Adderall sales. 

Possible 20-Year Sentence

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Now, both men are being charged with the distribution of false substances, and a possible sentence of 20 years in prison. 

Encouraging Unlawful Prescriptions

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Prosecutors believe the CEO and clinical president directed their medical providers to ignore medical guidelines for prescriptions and to approve customers for Adderall prescriptions whether they qualified for it or not.

A Number of Tactics

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They allegedly only paid providers based on how many patients were successfully prescribed instead of how many appointments were booked. They limited initial intake appointments to less than 30 minutes and discouraged providers from booking follow-up appointments. 

Targeting Recreational Drug Users

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Not only that but the company has been accused of purposefully targeting recreational drug seekers through social media advertising in an effort to generate as many “patients” as possible. 

Two Patients Overdosed

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According to the news release, two patients who acquired prescriptions through Done Global later overdosed and died. He, Brody, and other executives were aware of the deaths and continued to illegally prescribe and distribute the medications.

Medication and Controlled Substance

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Adderall is a prescription medication used to treat the symptoms of ADHD. It is also a controlled substance that contains amphetamine and dextroamphetamine.

Nationwide Medication Shortage

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The 40 million Adderall pills distributed by Done Global have contributed to a nationwide medicine shortage that is currently impacting people in need. Adderall and other ADHD medications have been in short supply for months and the pharmaceutical industry is still unsure of when the shortages will end.

Warning from the CDC

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On Thursday the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a warning for people who use telehealth platforms to purchase essential medication. “Potential disrupted access to care” could impact as many as 50,000 patients.

Change in Federal Laws

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Now, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) plans to reintroduce federal laws that once required patients to seek prescriptions for drugs like Adderall through an in-person doctor’s appointment. 

Hurting Many Americans

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“Any diversion of Adderall and other prescription stimulant pills to persons who have no medical need only exacerbates this shortage and hurts any American with a legitimate medical need for these drugs,” said DEA Administrator Anne Milgram.

“They Cannot Hide Their Crimes”

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“Those seeking to profit from addiction by illegally distributing controlled substances over the internet should know that they cannot hide their crimes and that the Justice Department will hold them accountable,” said Garland.

Some Details Still Unknown

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Neither He nor Brody have provided comments, and it is still being determined if either has hired attorneys. Done Global has not yet responded to comments. 

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The post Telehealth Company Accused of Fraudulent Prescriptions in $100m Adderall Scheme first appeared on Liberty & Wealth.

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The content of this article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute or replace professional financial advice.

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