Patient Scamming Doctors for RX

College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta CPSA

Patient impersonating a doctor to access opioids

A female patient is phoning family medicine clinics in and around Calgary, claiming to be a family physician based in BC.

She speaks to a clinic physician, explaining a BC patient is in the area and requires a refill of a triplicate medication (most recently, oxycodone).

Providing a valid physician registration number and a detailed patient history, she asks the Alberta-based physician to write a refill before going to the clinic and picking up the prescription.

This is a scam.

The “real” family physician in British Columbia has confirmed she is not making this request. Unfortunately, at least one Alberta physician did write a prescription.

If you receive a similar call, consider the following:

  • Meet the patient in person to determine if the refill is appropriate.
  • Make a return call to the physician making the request.
  • Check the provincial database (by contacting the regulatory College in BC or via PIN)
  • Confirm the physician’s contact information through the appropriate regulatory college.

The CPSA’s standard of practice and advice document on Prescribing: Drugs with Potential for Misuse or Diversion provide direction and resources to help navigate similar situations.

Physicians with questions, please contact:

Dr. Michael Caffaro, Assistant Registrar and Complaints Director

For media inquiries, please contact:

Kelly Eby, Director of Communications & Government Relations