Feds: Doctor in Northumberland County Operated ‘Pill Mill’, Illegally Prescribed Thousands With Opioid Pain Killers

MOUNT CARMEL -- Federal investigators accuse a doctor in Northumberland County of operating a “Pill Mill” saying he illegally prescribed painkillers to thousands of people at his offices Mount Carmel and Shamokin.

Dr. Raymond Kraynak is facing several federal charges including some in connection to five of his patients.

The U.S. Attorney's Office along with the DEA and state police say that since 2005, Kraynak illegally prescribed opioid painkillers to thousands of patients, leading to the deaths of five of those people between 2013 and 2015.

“That's sad for the people, the families and it just puts fear in the other doctors trying to do their jobs for the right people,” said Andrew Falton of Mount Carmel.

In Mount Carmel, people were stunned to hear how large a drug operation Kraynak was allegedly running.

“That definitely blows my mind, that's crazy,” said Falton.

“Yeah, exactly, Mount Carmel's a small little town, you know, so that makes it even more surprising,” said Stephanie Buczkowski.

Even after Kraynak was led from his office in Mount Carmel in handcuffs by drug enforcement agents.

His patients continued to show up for appointments only to find the place closed.

“Closed for emergency,” said patient Paul Ogonek.

Investigators say between 2016 and 2017 Kraynak prescribed the most controlled substances of any other doctor in Pennsylvania.

They accuse him off feeding the opioid epidemic.

“In a sense, it's disheartening because nobody can deny that this crisis is in the public domain and physicians certainly know it,” said U.S. Attorney David Freed.

But Mandy Karycki says she knows Dr. Kraynak

She says he's done a lot of good for the community.

“I get what's going on but he's a great guy and he's done quite a bit of good in the community so I would hope that people remember that during the course of everything,” said Karycki.

Dr. Kraynak is not charged with homicide for the deaths of those patients.

He is charged with drug delivery resulting in death.

He is locked up and has a bail hearing at 10 a.m. on Friday in federal court.

43 comments

  • Pa is poo

    Dear Northumberland county, You have just inherited 3,000 heroin addicts overnight. Enjoy yet another one of Pennsylvania’s nightmares. PS: Don’t step on the littered needles like I almost did at the park the other day.

  • Dave Healey

    Actually, when you do the math, it doesn’t seem to be all that bad. 2.7 million doses for 2,838 patients over 19 months is just over 50 doses a month per patient. If it’s twice daily (60 doses/month), that’s less than one month’s worth of medicine per patient. Maybe not every patient’s prognosis called for opioids, but the “sheer number of pills” touted by the prosecutor isn’t actually all that bad, when taken into perspective.

    • WAYNE S

      ya no big deal. This rundown area is full of junkies and related weird crimes so its not A big deal a doctor is prescribing opioids and probably other abused drugs to patients without full medical exams, JUST REQUESTS FROM PATIENTS. ya no biggie. typical look the other way PA coal region look at things.

  • lester

    Daddy taught him well. The old Doc in Shamakin was the same way, This is just another family trend, threes alot of strange things the locals do here.

    • BERRIOS

      It is a crying shame doctors turn like this for the demand and of course it creates more profit, but what happens is it turns already declining areas to, places where many do npt work, abuse pills and drink all day, The Shamokin area is bad enough but just look at the ashland, Shenandoah and mahanoy city areas. A mess! and i will put your bottom dollar he has many patients from there.

      • joe just joe

        No doubt. People like the good Dr are decimating this country but in essence he is only doing what he is allowed to do. He obviously let greed take over and went past the point of honoring his vows as a medical Dr. This guy is just an outlet for the drug and insurance companies. He’ll end up at some country club prison for a few years as that’s the way it works. Shirley, you know of another Dr just like him in your area. What will you do about it besides nothing?

  • Pig Parts

    I guess there’s no pills for those street roamers shaking their pant leg out on Lehigh Ave in Frackville. Oh, and be careful walking Penn Alley. That one peculiar roamer is always stooped down there

  • BERRIOS

    another up lifting coal region story. smh. but the tigers won the state championship and pennstate was pretty good. everythings alright alright.

    • joe just joe

      From what I’ve seen from the Tigers players they have the right attitude. The players on the PSU football team certainly do. You can’t find something to beitch about besides something that is a positive?

  • just wondering

    Five deaths attributed to him. Five deaths. All for a few dollars. Just musing how the comments here would be so “different” if the accused wasn’t a smiling, presumably educated white guy, but rather a brown or black man…

    • Sick of the bs

      How is it possible “some” people can make anything into a race issue? Do you realize the very race issue you are trying to bring to light is being severely hindered by people like you? Maybe one day this country week change and we can even have a non white president… Oh wait..

  • TJ

    And if he didn’t treat people with conditions that cause pain, he would have been sued for being negligent and allowing his patients to “suffer.” What a horrible time for physicians to be practicing medicine.

    • Waynes

      How bout What a Great area to live in, many so depressed there they just drink and do pills all day. Maybe kranyak couldn’t give in to the demand in this blighted area.

    • Sick of the bs

      I think it’s more about the people that just requested pills and he gave them prescriptions, not people who legitimately got seen and needed them lol

  • ElMa

    What do you call someone who graduates at the bottom of their class in medical school? “Doctor.”

    He’s facing charges for prescribing opioids for “thousands of patients?” Thousands of individual patients, or the same patients, thousands of times? How many thousands can there possibly be, and how is it that none of the pharmacies filling these thousands and thousands of prescriptions didn’t take note of this sudden spike in pain drug prescriptions?

    There are many factors, here. The first one begins with the patient. Just because someone writes out a prescription does not mean that one has to take that drug. Absolutely, this “doctor” is next in line, along with pharmacies, and the pharmaceutical companies, themselves. There’s a sudden surge of opioid production and this isn’t being monitored by our friends of man in the FDA?

    What are the “charges” and possible consequences that this man is going to face? Losing his license to practice in PA? Oh, no……not that…… Paying restitution? Beatings with bamboo canes? What could possibly harm this man’s life?

    And, no. There was no proof reading in this article. “They accuse him *off* feeding the opioid epidemic.” Journalism has spiraled into the vortex of text-posting and this article doesn’t read well, at all. Please, flag this post and place it under “awaiting moderation” because the illiterate journalist’s feelings are hurt INSTEAD of counseling this journalist in strong writing skills and communication. Please. That’s right. That’s how fake news gets published in the first place.

    • ElMa

      Additionally, the insurance companies are culpable. They are the entities that monitor all expenditures for medical care, INCLUDING prescriptions. Often, prescribed medications and protocols are denied by insurance companies. This, on the other hand, is a money-mill. Always, always follow the money. This doesn’t stop with the idiot doctor. It goes much further and deeper than that.

      • joe just joe

        Good luck if you think insurance companies are monitoring anything but profits and how they can be re-invested in their own stock or to buy out somebody else. This is a vicious cycle and the problem is now that many patients have become addicted to mind altering drugs as a result. This Dr should be forced to serve hard time…not get a country club vacation in federal prison.

  • trucker

    Bad News for people who suffer from chronic pain. Terminal stage 4 liver cancer? Take Tylenol for pain as needed.

    • ElMa

      Exactly. And, with that, the comment below is 100% accurate: hooray for the war on drugs. The people who are cannot function because of chronic pain are going to be punished, not this doctor, not the FDA, not the pharmaceutical companies, and certainly not the insurance companies. What a crock.

      That “war” is a bogus industry and little kids are being infused with information that they cannot possibly comprehend or process, thanks to all of these foolish “anti-drug” campaigns. Holy moley

    • Waynes

      Its a fine area coal crackers to visit, but an anemia or a root canal might be more pleasurable on a daily basis.

    • burtfan16

      The answer can be found in Kratom. It attaches to the same receptors that opiates attach to. Minimal side effects or withdrawal. Saved my life.

  • Sniffles

    Does this mean less kids will be crushing up pills and snorting them in the area? The rap music said it was cool to do. Emoji. Emoji. Emoji. Smash your kids’ phones and download an adblocker if you are reading this.

  • Vlad the impeacher

    This has “Russia” written all over it. Obviously a KGB spy employed by Mr. Rogers. We all know he wore those sweaters to cover up his tattoos and is still alive with Elvis plotting our destruction. Drop what you are doing, dye your hair pink and meet up at the nearest college to silence any opinion that we don’t like. Who is John Galt? The first person to climb Everest, which I was named after 3 years before it happened. Pills are good for you. Epi-pens are cheap.

  • The Junto

    Opioid epidemic started with doctors handing out scripts. Town blights started with local politicians over burdening the working class. We all know these things. More registration and taxes beeches! Your grass is high because you worked double shifts all week? Here is a fine. You had 10 kids from 7 different guys? Here is a check, food card, and some pills. You want to argue with our nonsense? We will call you names and *cough* protest. Goodbye America. It was nice.

  • Gizmo

    “Investigators say between 2016 and 2017 Kraynak prescribed the most controlled substances than any other doctor in Pennsylvania.” ….proof read much?

Comments are closed.