The state of New York is taking a new approach to how they plan to limit the amount of opioid prescriptions being used and abused. Beginning March 27th, all prescriptions must be sent electronically from the doctor prescribing the medication straight to the pharmacy. By doing so, the state is hoping to see a decrease in fake and stolen prescriptions taken to the pharmacies to be filled. As written by Alex Ellefson in his piece in the Bensonhurst Bean: “The Times reports that more controlled-substance prescriptions (27 million) were written in New York State than the number of residents (20 million). Meanwhile, the number of opioid-related deaths have skyrocketed during the last decade.” The number of deaths in New York State rose from 341 in 2004 to 1,227 in 2013. One can only imagine how much more it has risen since.
When a patient’s information is run through the system it will be put through the Prescription Monitoring Program Registry which helps determine whether it may be a patient who is misusing or abusing the drugs. Through this new legislation if a doctor decides against following the new system and caught, it is possible that they will face consequences as a result. This is the first time doctors will actually be held liable for how their prescriptions are distributed and where it cannot fall back on anyone else. They also hope that this will help with communication through different fields of work. Of course, as with many changes, there have been those who are opposed to the new system, saying that the online process just is not as convenient for them or their patients.
A Shift in Attitudes
The biggest point made in Governor Andrew Cuomo’s press release of the implementation of the new system is that it is important to recognize that addiction is something that can happen to anyone, no matter who they are. That is why this is a statewide change that is in effect for everyone. Recently across the nation we have seen numerous changes to laws and regulations in regards to fighting addiction. More and more people are beginning to realize that it is something that can affect anyone. Only time will tell how productive this new system will be, but there are bound to be other states that follow in New York’s steps to aiding and stopping opiate addiction.
If you or a loved one is struggling with an opiate addiction, call the professionals at Serenity Acres today, at 1-800-203-2024.