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Regulate drug prescriptions

Sen. Mike Fassano, R-New Port Richey, has proposed a way for doctors to monitor their patient’s prescriptions in an effort to prevent drug overdoses. This system is much needed. Last year, 2,700 Floridians died of prescription drug overdoses, Jim McDonough, director for the Florida Drug Control Office, said.

This bill should be passed quickly so it can be put into effect before any more people die.

If passed, the bill would require the Department of Health to establish a computer database in which pharmacists would be required to input information whenever they dispense a controlled narcotic. Doctors and pharmacists would then be able to check the database to see if patients have repeatedly been given a prescription drug.

When so many people are dying from prescription drug overdoses, something needs to be done. This proposal could significantly lower the amount of people dying.

In the past, the bill was denied because some thought it was an invasion of privacy. However, this time around, a companion bill has been proposed that would charge any unauthorized person who attempts to access the sytem with a felony. Only doctors and pharmacists would have access to the system on a regular basis, and police officials could when investigating someone for a crime.

With this addition, invasion of privacy won’t be an issue. Further, saving lives is worth giving up a little privacy.

When someone is addicted to prescription drugs or planning suicide, they may get prescriptions filled at multiple pharmacies. This system could prevent that from happening.

Part of the government’s job is to protect people, and this system would do just that. Doctors would be better able to monitor their patients, and pharmacists would also be able to watch for any problems. This could head off many deaths, since an excess of pill prescriptions would be caught before the patient had a chance to harm him or herself.