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Connecticut is the latest state to require that health care providers obtain information about patients from the state's prescription drug monitoring program before prescribing controlled substances.
Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Wednesday signed into law H.B. 6856, which is intended to combat substance abuse, the governor's office said in a statement.
The law, effective Oct. 1, requires health care providers to check a patient's history in the state's prescription drug monitoring program before prescribing more than a 72-hour supply of any controlled substance, according to the law. The database will allow providers to verify a patient isn't seeking prescriptions from multiple prescribers or pharmacies in the state.
“We have to treat addiction like a public health issue not a crime,” Gov. Malloy said in the statement. “Connecticut is taking a stand against a nationwide prescription opioid and heroin overdose epidemic to become a leader in combating opioid and heroin abuse, preventing drug addiction and overdoses. This common-sense legislation will help save lives and address a pressing public health need.”
H.B. 6856 also states that health care providers prescribing controlled substances for “continuous or prolonged treatment” must review a patient's records at least every 90 days.
States like New York and Tennessee also require providers to check such databases before prescribing opioids.
Meanwhile, Missouri and Pennsylvania are the only states without prescription drug monitoring programs accessible to health care providers.
Building relationships with physicians can help workers compensation payers improve the outcomes of claims and combat rising medical costs.