We’ve been following the prescription opioid abuse epidemic for sometime now. As it continues to grow and cause damage across the country, our mission is to spread awareness and make resources available for those in need of recovery resources. Too often we are unaware of the dangers that lurk within our homes, families, and communities.
Pennsylvania has been heavily impacted by the prescription opioid abuse epidemic. In order to combat the growing public health and safety threat, Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf signed five new laws on Wednesday. The legislative package includes measures that require doctors to check the state’s prescription drug monitoring database for all patients, not only first timers. These new laws also limit opioid prescriptions in emergency rooms and to young children.
Beyond those immediate measures, the five new laws aim to create new training regimens for medical students. The training is aimed at teaching proper prescription and drug disposal methods. This initiative to ensure the next generation of doctors and medical professionals will help to remedy the opioid abuse epidemic by reducing the over prescribing of powerful painkillers.
Specifics of the new laws include limiting prescriptions from emergency rooms and for children to a seven day supply and teaching medical students about alternatives to opioids and risks of addiction. Most importantly, the bills will allow all law enforcement agencies, hospitals, nursing homes, and licensed pharmacies to become safety drop-off sites for unused medications. These locations will also feature resources for care for those who are in need.