As Georgia and the country at large continue to struggle with an opioid crisis, the legislature took a step this past session to try and prevent future abuse. From 1999 to 2015, the number of those who died every year from opioid abuse rose from 8,200 to 33,000 annually. Roughly 2.5 million Americans are addicted to the drug. David Brooks pointed out in a recent column that in 12 states there are more opioid prescriptions than there are people.
Sponsored by Rep. Kevin Tanner (R- 9 Dawsonville), and carried in the Senate by Senator Renee Unterman (R- 45 Buford – and chair of the Health and Human Services Committee), the bill is designed to “collect more information regarding the dispensing and use of certain controlled substances; to change the frequency of reporting certain prescriptions in the electronic data base of prescription information; to clarify provisions relating to confidentiality; to change provisions relating to liability and duties; to change provisions relating to the definitions of dangerous drugs; to provide for a coroner’s inquest when an individual dies of a suspected drug overdose.”
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