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Can my pcp decide to stop prescribing my xanax due to new office policies without any warning or refills til I get a new Dr?

Strongsville, OH |

My primary Dr has prescribed my xanax for the 3 years that she has been in business. The office has started a new policy, health and wellness, and will no longer prescribe this type of medicine. I was told this with 3 pills left. She said she would give me 1 month refill til I found a physiciatrist. After I expressed my displeasure, properly, I found out that she did not fill my prescription at all! Anxiety has caused my lungs to partially collapse 4x. It also causes idiopathic hypoglycemia and terrible bowel and digestive problems. Can I hold her resposible for any withdrawal consequences? This is just a power play, as they are not happy that I expressed my dislike. I have an appointment on July 27 with a new Dr., but until then I will be in full withdrawal affecting school/work

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Attorney answers 2


I do not believe this is medical negligence. Just like a restaurant that retains the right not to serve a patron, a doctor is not obligated to provide services to a patient (with the exception of an ER facing a patient in a medical unstable condition). A PCP clinic can drop a patient and/or choose not to prescribe meds. Xanax is an addictive controlled substance. Many physicians are uncomfortable simply prescribing it for an unlimited period of time. It is foreseeable that a patient that doesn't get their Xanax may have anxiety but it is not necessarily foreseeable that lack of Xanax would cause truly serious medical problems (like collapsed lungs). If the injury is not foreseeable, the negligent party is not responsible for the damage. I recommend that you simply go out and find a new doctor quickly.

I am not an Ohio lawyer. To get competent legal advice regarding your state's laws and critical legal deadlines, you should speak to a local Ohio attorney with experience in this area.


This is not a medical negligence claim in my opinion based upon the facts you relay. The physicians offer to refill for a month is appropriate to all continuity of your care. The physician, as do you, maintains a right to terminate relationships in these out patient settings. You are entitled to have your records forwarded to your new doctor in advance of your appt, but will need to execute an authorization for your new physician to make this request.

This answer is not legal advice, and does not amount to a legal relationsip. Only with a full exploration of the underlying facts can the true merits of a claim be assessed. Be cognizant these claims have a statute of limitations, and you are responsible to protect the same.

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