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Prescription Drug Abuse, the Federal Controlled Substances Act and the Legal Obligation of Corresponding Responsibility (P/T)

This home study course provides an overview of the diversion, trafficking and abuse of prescription opioids from the perspective of both a regulator and pharmacist. Using opioid diversion and abuse as a foundation, the course explains the interplay between the Federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and its implementing regulations. The presentation focuses on the elements of a prescription, the legal obligations of a prescriber and the corresponding responsibility of the pharmacist to determine if a prescription is effective/valid through the identification and resolution of prescription “red flags” prior to dispensing a controlled substance. The course will illustrate interaction between the patient, prescriber and pharmacist and explain the resolution process to determine whether a prescription is valid/effective and how the pharmacist should document his decision to dispense or refuse to dispense a controlled substance. The course will review recent investigations and case law concerning prescribers and pharmacists and use these case studies to explain violations and the potential sanctions for non-compliance. The participants will be exposed to the DEA inspection/investigative process to include DEA inspections, Orders to Show Cause, Immediate Suspension Orders and administrative hearings. The participant will also be exposed to administrative scheduling of a controlled substance and controlled substance quotas.
Upon successful registration of this program you will be returned to this program page and given access to the program materials/video.



CE Hours


CE Units


Activity Type

  • Knowledge

Target Audience(s)

  • Pharmacists
  • Pharmacy Technicians


Participants have 60 days from the start of their program to claim CE credit and verify it has been upload to CPE Monitor. If your program requires the completion of a post test/eval/survey those items MUST be done before that 60 day window closes to receive credit for that program. Statements of credit can be viewed and printed from CPE Monitor. Statements of credit will no longer be printed and mailed to the participant. **No partial individual session credit will be given**
REGISTRATION NOTE: During the registration process, if a fee is required, please enter the zip code associated with your credit card's BILLING ADDRESS. For security purposes payments are processed through a separate system, so when prompted, please click “ok” to be taken to that site and complete your registration. Upon successful registration of this program you will receive an email confirmation/receipt and will be returned to this program page. When you are retuned to this page you will see a note at the top of the page reading “You are registered for this program.”
If you are not automatically returned to this page or see only a blank white screen your transaction was not successful, and you will need to try again.


If paying by check please mail to the address below:

UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy
Attn: Continuing Education
301 Pharmacy Lane, CB# 7574 Beard Hall
Chapel Hill, NC 27599
Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education
The University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education as a provider of continuing pharmacy education. To receive CE credit, participants must complete the CE attendance form and the online evaluation of the program (instructions to be emailed). Statements of credit can be viewed and printed in CPE Monitor approximately 2 to 3 weeks after the program and you have completed any needed requirements. **No partial credit will be available**





  • Describe the Federal Controlled Substances Act (Title 21 United States Code § 801, et seq.) and it’s implementing regulations (21 Code of Federal Regulations § 1300, et seq.)
  • Describe the nature and scope of the diversion, trafficking and abuse of prescription controlled substances in the United States through statistics and INCB consumption figures. Explain the controlled substance quota process.
  • Explain the elements of a prescription and define corresponding responsibility under the Federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and implementing regulations and the case law that shaped the legal responsibilities of a practitioner and pharmacist when prescribing and dispensing controlled substances.
  • Describe and explain how to identify “red flags” at the presentation of a prescription, how to resolve “red flags”, and the decision to fill or refuse to fill the prescription.
  • Explain the DEA inspection and administrative process, notice of inspection, administrative inspection warrant, and administrative procedures for license revocation.
  • Discuss and explain the administrative and legislative scheduling process for controlled substances at the state and Federal level.


Joseph Rannazzisi, JD

Brief Bio : Joseph T. Rannazzisi retired from the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) on October 31, 2015 after serving over 29 years in drug law enforcement. Mr. Rannazzisi was employed by the Veterans Administration as a pharmacist prior to his service with DEA. From June 2005 until retirement, he held the position of Deputy Assistant Administrator of the DEA Office of Diversion Control. In that capacity, Mr. Rannazzisi supervised DEA’s efforts to prevent, detect and investigate the diversion of pharmaceutical controlled substances and listed chemicals from legitimate distribution channels. He provided regulatory oversight and supervised the inspection and investigation of all businesses that import, export, manufacture, distribute or dispense controlled substances and listed chemicals to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements related to drug and facility security, record keeping and accountability. He has provided continuing education to more than 9000 pharmacists and practitioners on all aspects of pharmaceutical controlled substance diversion. He earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Pharmacy from Butler University and is a registered pharmacist in the State of Indiana. He earned a Juris Doctor from the Detroit College of Law at Michigan State University and is a member of the State Bar of Michigan.

Activity Number

Date: 09/01/17 12:00 AM - 08/31/18 11:55 PM

CE Hours