Order of Pharmacists calls for emergency suspension as member faces drug fraud charges

by Ryan Smith13 Jun 2016
The Quebec Order of Pharmacists is seeking the immediate suspension of a pharmacist accused of ethical breaches, according to a CBC News report.

Jonathan-Yan Perreault, a 37-year-old pharmacist, is facing 18 charges including falsifying his license and drug use. Perreault, who began practicing in 2005, has built a string of more than 40 pharmacies across Quebec, CBC News reported.

The first cracks in Perreault’s empire showed in 2014, when a pharmacist alerted the Order of Pharmacists that he had contacted a doctor to buy medicine samples for resale, according to CBC News. Such purchases are banned.

And when Perreault’s pharmacies were investigated, inspectors discovered stockpiles of expired drugs, incorrectly labeled drugs and drugs that had been repackaged without proper identification. Perreault since been accused of selling painkillers without a prescription and charging full name-brand prices for generic drugs.

He’s also been accused of negligence. According to CBC News, one patient claimed he gave her sleeping pills rather than the antibiotics which had been prescribed to her. Another claimed he offered a $500 gift certificate to discourage them from filing a complaint. And colleagues said they were threatened and pressured to sign falsified documents to exonerate Perreault.

According to the Quebec Order of Pharmacists, Perreault faces 18 charges, including:
  • Fraud in obtaining his pharmaceutical license
  • Selling wholesale drugs without a license
  • Retaining expired drugs with the intent to sell them
  • Sale of nonprescription drugs
  • Failure to ensure an accurate inventory of prescription medications
  • Registering false information on patient records
  • Failing to notify the Order of Pharmacists that he was an owner, shareholder or partner in a pharmacy
  • Failure to provide the order with legal documents
  • Use of nonprescription drugs
  • Use of psychotropic substances
  • Practising pharmacy in a condition that was likely to compromise the quality of his practice
  • Filing false insurance claims
  • Receiving benefits from the practice of pharmacy
  • Using nominees on legal documents
  • Making threats and committing sexual harassment
  • Attempting to bribe a patient to evade civil or disciplinary proceedings
  • Entering into agreements with seniors homes and rehabilitation centres
  • Obstructing the work of the trustee, falsifying documents and refusing to submit to drug tests
Perreault’s attorney requested that his hearing be postponed due to his fragile health, CBC News reported. She claimed that he has attempted suicide twice since May 21 and requested a publication n ban on his medical records.

On Thursday, the Quebec Order of Pharmacists dismissed both the request for adjournment and the publication ban, CBC News reported. Philippe Frere, the trustee in charge of the case, said Perreault was trying to dodge the hearing in order to sell his pharmacies, some of which are worth around $1 million.

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