Virginia Physician Arrested On Federal Drug Charge

Federal authorities charged a Martinsville doctor of osteopathic medicine Tuesday with possessing scheduled II drugs, with the intent to distribute and sell.

Joel A. Smithers of Greensboro, North Carolina operates The Center for Integrative Health at Smithers Community Healthcare at 445 Commonwealth Boulevard in Martinsville. Smithers was released on a $25,000 bond, but is prohibited from prescribing controlled substances, including stimulants and narcotics.

According to a Centers for Disease Control report, more opioid prescriptions are distributed per person in Martinsville than anywhere else in the United States. The report, known as “Vital Signs” is based on data from 59,000 pharmacies nationwide from 2010 to 2015. Over those five years, the majority of local areas saw a reduction in the number of opioid prescriptions written, but in Martinsville the numbers were still larger than any other county or city in the country.

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