It seems that just about everybody is asked to take a drug test these days -- everyone from school bus drivers to parolees.
Not doctors, though. And that seems wrong to Consumer Watchdog, a California non-profit that is promoting an initiative measure that would appear on the November 2014 ballot in California.
The Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act would require mandatory physician drug and alcohol testing. The measure would also require doctors to report colleagues who are under the influence while on duty, check patient histories before prescribing narcotics to help identify drug abusers, and would update the state’s 38-year-old cap on malpractice victims’ recovery mandatory.
It goes without saying that the measure is not popular with doctors.
To drive their point home, backers have been producing a series of videos, dubbed the “Pee In A Cup The Musical” series. The latest episode greeted doctors arriving at the Disneyland Anaheim Marriott last Saturday for the evening Awards Gala at the California Medical Association’s annual meeting.
A mobile video truck circled just outside the security perimeter in front of the hotel, playing the musical video that makes the case for mandatory drug testing of doctors.
The initiative is named for the children of Bob Pack, who were walking with their parents on a sidewalk in Danville, Calif., when a car swerved off the road, killing the two children and injuring Pack's wife, Carmen, who was then pregnant with twins. The unborn twins were also lost in the accident.
The driver of the car, Jimena Barreto, turned out to be a doctor-shopping drug addict who was convicted of second-degree murder and imprisoned for 30 years to life. The Kaiser doctors who prescribed her thousands of pills, however, were never held accountable for their negligence.
Barreto had no physical symptoms, but managed to stockpile narcotics without any oversight.
Learn more about the initiative here.