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Prescription Law Might be Good for Opioid Crisis, Bad for Doctors and Patients

New law is aimed at ending the opioid crisis. Photo: Flickr Creative Commons

The law that took effect July 1 limits prescriptions of opioids for acute pain to three days, although a seven day supply can be prescribed under certain conditions. It also requires doctors to attend a two-hour training and check with a state-wide patient drug registry before they write prescriptions. Florida Medical Association’s Jeff Scott says with more restrictions, some doctors’ offices might stop prescribing opioids completely.

“Physicians that only have a few patients that need a controlled substance, taking the time to register with the database and make sure they’re complying with the provisions of the law. And they’ll probably rely on other physicians to handle that.”

The law only applies to opioids prescribed for acute pain which is the normal and short-term side effect of medical procedures or illnesses. It does not include chronic pain or pain as a symptom of cancer, terminal conditions, palliative care, or a serious traumatic injury.

If you'd like to listen to the full story, please click on the clip above.

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.