HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — The owners of Westbury Pharmacy waived their right to a hearing and instead agreed to the “revocation of the pharmacy permit and payment of a $65,050 monetary penalty,” according to an announcement from The Virginia Department of Health Professions. Former pharmacist-in-charge Faiz Oley Jr. also waived his right to proceedings and will lose his pharmacist license. He was ordered to pay a $55,050 penalty.
The pharmacy, which posted a statement on its website Friday [scroll down to read], can apply for reinstatement in three years.
Westbury Pharmacy was scheduled to go before the Virginia Board of Pharmacy next week. The West End pharmacy was shutdown in April over concerns about its ability to assure the “quality, sterility, integrity, safety and efficacy of drugs dispensed, along with its ability to safeguard against the diversion of drugs.”
The State Board of Pharmacy alleged that in a two-year period starting in 2012, the pharmacy lost more than 25,000 of the potent oxycodone 30 milligram painkillers, along with more than 21,000 other types of oxycodone pills, and more than 2,500 other kinds of painkillers.
Documents that showed why Westbury’s permit was pulled included allegations that security was easily violated and on multiple occasions, drugs were improperly labeled or stored and expired. In addition, the books were cooked to hide missing medications. There were also billing issues and unsafe compounding of drugs.
“Over a year ago it was discovered that a janitor had accessed our prescription department and stolen substantial amounts of pain medication,” Westbury Pharmacy released in a statement last month. “We immediately notified the police. That individual was arrested, pled guilty, and is now in jail. In its investigation, the Board has raised many issues about the operations of our prescription department. We take these issues very seriously.”
Westbury said as a result, it had changed the way the pharmacy was managed and operated.
In a jailhouse interview with Mark Holmberg, janitor Chauncey Andrey Carter Sr. said was being set up to take the fall for others who were stealing pain pills.
"I think I was the patsy so they could cover their ass, that's what I think," Carter said. "I knew a lot of stuff was going on in there that shouldn’t have been going on, but that wasn’t my business."
The restaurant and retail sections of Westbury Pharmacy have remained opened throughout the ordeal. No announcement has been made about that part of the business. This is a developing story.
Westbury Pharmacy Statement:
"Westbury Pharmacy voluntarily entered into a consent order today with the Virginia Board of Pharmacy.
Our company has cooperated with the Board of Pharmacy, and our hope is that, working with the Board, a new independent pharmacy will be able to relocate or open at this location in the near future.
During this time we have received heartfelt expressions of support from hundreds of patients and health care colleagues and for that we are most grateful. We thank you.
It has been a privilege to serve such loyal patients and the Richmond community, which we have done for generations.
During this time, our home health service, retail store and restaurant remain open."