Dr. Omar Guesmia, proprietor of Gentle Dental Care, will pay $60,000 to resolve allegations that he and his dental practice violated the Controlled Substances Act by enabling an office staff member to use an electronic prescription system to obtain oxycodone for their own use.

Dr. Guesmia gave his credentials to an office staff member, who transmitted oxycodone prescriptions to various pharmacies, then retrieved the prescriptions for their own illegitimate use. Physicians generally send prescriptions to pharmacies using an electronic prescription system than can only be accessed using a password or other token, ensuring that only authorized persons transmit prescriptions to a pharmacy. Federal and New York State law prohibit practitioners from sharing their prescribing credentials with anyone and provide that physicians are responsible for all prescriptions written under said credentials.

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Dr. Guesmia surrendered his DEA Registration, and as part of the civil settlement agreement, agreed not to seek renewal for at least five years.

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"the authority to prescribe controlled substances comes with great responsibility," said United States Attorney Carla B Freedman. "I encourage all medical providers who have a prescription pad or credentials to safeguard access and vigilantly monitor their use through resources like New York State's Prescription Monitoring Program, also known as I-STOP."

DEA Special Agent in Charge Frank Tarentino said, "This settlement is a reminder of how much harm a prescription pad can have when it is int eh wrong hands."

The announcement was made by United States Attorney for the Northern District of New York Carla B Freedman, and Frank A Tarentino III, Special Agent in Charge of the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), New York Division.

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