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Thursday, June 6, 2013

Florida Prescription Drug Database Failure

Ritalin
In the past couple years the state of Florida has been in the news on countless occasions regarding the prescription drug epidemic. Between the pain clinics, pill-mills, and doctor shopping, Florida has become the epicenter of abuse. In response to the problem a prescription drug database was created to combat the problem. However, two-thirds of pharmacists and 90 percent of doctors in Florida have failed to use the drug database, according to federal officials.

Unfortunately, a state House bill failed that would have forced doctors and pharmacists to use the database prior to writing or filling narcotics. A state Senate bill also failed to pass what would have required doctors to consult the database. Despite the failures, Florida approved $500,000 to keep the database in operation, WUSF reports.

Susan Langston, who manages the anti-diversion program of the Drug Enforcement Administration office that covers South Florida, said at a state Board of Pharmacy meeting this week that the database has been effective in shutting down pill mills and oxycodone abuse in South Florida.

If pharmacists and doctors fail to use the database the problem will continue, undoubtedly getting worse as time passes. It is crucial for officials to get the bills approved that would require health care workers to use the database.
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