South Carolina Eyes Mandating Database Use to Curb Painkiller Abuse

By | December 3, 2014

A council created by Gov. Nikki Haley says requiring doctors to use a statewide database to check their patients’ prescription history can reduce the rampant abuse of painkillers in South Carolina.

The governor’s Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Council on Monday unanimously approved its recommendations for stemming abuse. That includes passing a law requiring health care professional to participate in South Carolina’s Prescription Monitoring Program.

According to the report, just 21 percent of prescribers have registered for the voluntary program.

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Councilman Louis Costa said less than 3 percent actually use it. The past chairman of the Board of Medical Examiners said the database is the quickest and most effective tool in getting excess painkillers off the street.

Costa said mandating participation would break with tradition, but the public deserves it.

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