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OKC Woman Arrested After Doctor Shopping For Prescription Pills

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Andee Smith went to at least five different Oklahoma City area doctors looking for sleeping and pain pills. Andee Smith went to at least five different Oklahoma City area doctors looking for sleeping and pain pills.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

Prescription drug abuse is sending people doctor shopping to get their fix.

We spotlight one recent case involving a young mother of two, who doctor shopped her way to thousands of pills.

According to court documents, the mother, 27-year-old Andee Smith, went to at least five different Oklahoma City area doctors looking for sleeping and pain pills.

One of the places she went to is Dr. John Yang, a family practice doctor on N.W. 23rd St.

When she didn't get her prescription fix there, she went right across the street to the office of Dr. Kiet Nguyen.

In fact from the outside, you can't even tell Nguyen's office is a doctor's office, but this is one of five doctor offices around the metro that Smith visited in the last 12 months.

Smith was booked into the Oklahoma County jail Thursday but was released the same day on $5,000 bond. She was not at home when we paid her a visit.

"There are good people in Oklahoma being affected by prescription drugs," said Darrell Weaver, the director of the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics. "We have to strip the mask off in Oklahoma and understand that its affecting a lot of people!"

Weaver confirms one of their agents is the one who arrested Smith, who court records state even signed a contract with one doctor that stated she was not seeing any other doctors for care.

"You could have a legitimate injury, and before you know it you're strung out," said Weaver. "And you're going doctor shopping and doing illegal activities."

Weaver said doctors do have access to a real time prescription monitoring system online, but not all of them use it.

That is something Terri White with the Department of Mental Health would like to see change.

"We have many physicians who are incredibly supportive and think this is an important tool, but we still have doctors that don't understand this issue of prescription drug abuse," said White. "This could tremendously cut down on doctor shopping - if physicians check, utilize that system. That system that is there and available, that Oklahoma leads the nation in, it will save lives!

Court papers state that in the course of a year, Smith received almost 3,000 prescription pills before she was caught. In fact, it was an anonymous source who turned her in.

"We have a huge problem in Oklahoma," stressed Weaver. "Drug overdose deaths are skyrocketing, and of those deaths, 80 percent are from prescription drugs, so we have a huge issue in Oklahoma with this."

On Monday, there is a senate committee hearing on a bill that would address doctors being required to check the monitoring system before prescribing a narcotic.

Senate Bill 1821 is a part of the governor's big initiative to fight drug abuse in our state.

Read more about Senate Bill 1821.

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