Prescription drug monitoring bill passes Pa. Senate - abc27 WHTM

Prescription drug monitoring bill passes Pa. Senate

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The Pennsylvania Senate has approved a bill to expand the state's prescription drug monitoring program.

Senate Bill 1180, authored by Sen. Pat Vance (R-Cumberland/York) would create a Department of Health board to oversee an electronic database of all prescribed controlled substances, including anabolic steroids, hydrocodone, codeine, and benzodiazepines such as Valium and Xanax.

Supporters say the measure would prevent so called "doctor shopping," where people visit different doctors to receive medications associated with prescription drug abuse.

"This legislation will empower physicians to make more educated decisions when writing prescriptions, thus prevent drug abuse," Vance said in a statement. "Hopefully, problems will be caught early and reduce the number of overdose deaths in the commonwealth."

Vance said Pennsylvania currently has the 14th highest drug overdose mortality rate in the nation.

Her bill now goes to the state House of Representatives.

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