Drug diversion can be defined as any criminal act or deviation that removes a prescription drug from its intended path from the manufacturer to the intended patient. As stated in the ASHP Guidelines on Preventing Diversion of Controlled Substances1, “Controlled substances (CS) diversion in health systems can lead to serious patient safety issues, harm to the diverter, and significant liability risk to the organization." These guidelines outline a collaborative, interdisciplinary approach to and accountability for CS diversion prevention and response within an organization. The purpose of this toolkit is to provide additional resources for health care organizations working to implement a comprehensive Controlled Substance Diversion Prevention Program.
Sample Controlled Substances Drug Diversion Pharmacy Technician Position Descriptions
- Diversion Monitoring Project Manager [PDF]
- Pharmacy ADC Quality Coordinator [PDF]
- Pharmacy Loss Prevention Specialist [PDF]
Processes and Workflow Resources
- ASHP Guidelines on Preventing Diversion of Controlled Substances [PDF]
- Minnesota Hospitalist Association Drug Diversion roadmap [PDF]
- Drug Diversion Core Team Investigation Report [PDF]
- Example of steps in investigating a potential drug diversion incident [PDF]
Communicating with Law Enforcement
- Should you report to Local Law Enforcement in addition to the DEA? Drop down?
In the majority of the states, reporting to local law enforcement is not mandatory like reporting to the DEA and professional licensing boards. That being said, the DEA does offer support reporting drug diversion incidents to Law Enforcement as prompt notification to law enforcement will allow them time to investigate the incident and potentially prosecute those responsible for the diversion.2
Reporting to local law enforcement may be the only way to help ensure an individual that has diverted is not able to go to another facility where they may cause further harm to patients by diverting again.
- Federal Pharmacy Law and Sample State Law (CT) [PDF]
Resources for Addiction, Healing, and Recovery
Many employers provide Employee and Family Resource Programs that include substance abuse services. These services may be able to be tailored to provide individualized care and support. In addition to your employer, some State Pharmacy Societies also provide substance abuse services. Listed below are other links that provide information on alcohol or substance misuse.
- Start Your Recovery
- Narcotics Anonymous
- Seeking Drug Abuse Treatment: Know What to Ask
- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) national helpline. 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or 1-800-487-4889 (TDD — for hearing impaired). This hotline can provide free and confidential information for individuals and family members facing substance abuse and mental health issues. You can call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
- Buprenorphine Treatment Practitioner Locator. Find physicians authorized to treat opioid dependency with buprenorphine by state.
- Behavioral health treatment locator. An anonymous source of information regarding behavioral health treatment facilities.
- Buprenorphine treatment practitioner locator. A source to locate physicians authorized to treat opioid dependence with buprenorphine.
- Overdose Prevention Toolkit. A guide to opioid use, overdose, recovery, and facts for community members.
- Partnership for drug-free kids. A non-profit supporting families struggling with a child’s substance use. You can call the helpline at 1-855-378-4373, live chat, or email them for more information, resources or help.
- Directory of Single State Agencies for Substance Abuse Services. A directory of state-funded drug treatment facilities.
Additional Tools and Resources
- National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators
- International Health Facility Diversion Association
- ASHP Drug Distribution and Control Resource Center
- DEA Diversion Control: DEA Controlled Substance Security Manual
- 10 Ways to Prevent Drug Diversion
- CMS Drug Diversion Toolkit [PDF]
- ASHP Guidelines on Preventing Diversion of Controlled Substances. (2017). Am J Health-Syst Pharm,74(5), 325-348. doi:10.2146/ajhp160919