Monday, November 14, 2011

Florida Enacts Prescription Drug Database while FDA and DEA Ignore Requests to Limit Production of Oxycodone

As of September 1, 2011 Florida launched a prescription drug database. The goal according to lawmakers is to reduce prescription drug abuse and to end the practice of “doctor shopping”. Once a prescription for a controlled substance is filled at a pharmacy, the pharmacy is required to report the prescription to the state database. This article from Baynews 9 shows that pharmacists are more than happy to comply with the new requirement to prevent abuse.

The State of Florida is taking a proactive approach to limiting access to prescription drugs and preventing abuse, the opposite can be said of the federal government. The Drug Enforcement Administration Office of Diversion Control ultimately decides how much of a particular drug can be manufactured and send to market per year. When past drugs such as amphetamines and Quaaludes gained popularity in the 1970’s and 1980’s the Office of Diversion control enforced 90% and 74% production cuts in manufacturing. These manufacturing cuts essentially eliminated sale of these substances on the street and curtailed their abuse. With such success one would think a similar approach would be taken combat oxycodone abuse and addiction. No such measures have been taken by the Office of Diversion Control and as this article suggests there may be hidden agendas by employees of this division of the Drug Enforcement Administration such as employment with the big drug companies upon retirement from the agency.  

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