Congrats to DHEC’s Newest Drug Control Inspectors

By Jamie Shuster

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Inspector Rachel Richman receives the J.P. Strom award from Deputy Director of the SC Criminal Justice Academy Mike Lanier. (L-R: Deputy Director Mike Lanier, Inspector Rachel Richman, Bureau of Drug Control Director Lisa Thomson.)

Many people don’t know that our Bureau of Drug Control (BDC) serves not only a regulatory role, but also provides enforcement of South Carolina’s Controlled Substances Act. In fact, our BDC inspectors are actually pharmacists who have undergone additional training and become state law enforcement officers.

Our BDC inspectors conduct onsite inspections and audits of pharmacies, hospitals, and practitioners to make sure they are properly recording, storing, and handling controlled substances. These important members of our Public Health team make recommendations and offer assistance to help these entities follow proper procedures in handling controlled substances. They respond to complaints and concerns reported to DHEC that sometimes indicate criminal activity or misuse of controlled substances. When warranted, our BDC inspectors also make arrests.

We are proud to introduce the two newest members of our BDC law enforcement team, Inspector Megan Bates and Inspector Rachel McCoy Richman. Both Bates and Richman recently graduated from the S.C. Criminal Justice Academy, where they took part in an intensive twelve week long course to become certified Class 1 Law Enforcement Officers.

During the graduation ceremony, Richman received the academy’s J.P. Storm Award for her outstanding academic achievements. The award is presented to the member of the graduating class with the highest cumulative academic average. She is the 4th member of the BDC to be a recipient of this honor.

Congratulations to Megan and Rachel, and thank you to all of our BDC inspectors for the work that you do every day to protect South Carolinians from potential abuse of controlled substances.

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