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Southeast Michigan Pharmacy and Pharmacist Summarily Suspended for Over Dispensing Controlled Substances

Media Contact: LARA Communications 517-373-9280

May 10, 2018 - The Dept. of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) served orders summarily suspending the controlled substance license of Seaway Pharmacy of Taylor and the pharmacist license of Hani Zaher, who is responsible for the pharmacy’s compliance with the Public Health Code. The Michigan Public Health Code provides for summary suspension of licenses when the public health, safety, or welfare requires emergency action.

LARA served accompanying administrative complaints on Seaway and Zaher detailing their alleged dispensing of controlled substances without good faith and a failure to maintain effective controls against drug diversion.

LARA’s complaint specifically alleges that Seaway dispensed oxycodone 30mg and alprazolam (Xanax) 2mg in large quantities and repeatedly dispensed other dangerous combinations of medications to patients. An inspection of Seaway also uncovered unlicensed individuals working as technicians, a lack of policies and procedures for staff, and expired medications in stock.

Governor Rick Snyder’s Michigan Prescription Drug and Opioid Abuse Task Force called for a more comprehensive enforcement program against licensed health professionals and facilities who participate in overprescribing and over dispensing. 

As a result of collaborative efforts of multiple state agencies, the number of opioid prescriptions dispensed decreased by 10.7 percent since 2015 while the overall number of schedules 2-5 controlled substance prescriptions dispensed decreased by 7.1 percent during that same timespan.

An order of summary suspension is a temporary measure to protect the public and not a final determination that a licensee has violated the Public Health Code.