Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Act Now Lawmakers Still Have Time to Address Opioid Crisis

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Act Now Lawmakers Still Have Time to Address Opioid Crisis

Article excerpt

State lawmakers should use the few remaining days in the legislative calendar to pass new laws aimed at addressing the opioid epidemic. In a rare address Wednesday to a joint session of the General Assembly, Gov. Tom Wolf stressed the possibility of accomplishing much if members from both chambers and parties roll up their sleeves and commit to getting the job done. He was spot on. Delay means more lives lost.

Far too many- nearly 3,500 last year alone- have been lost already. Now is the time to act on legislators' proposals or those Mr. Wolf has advanced to address the crisis.

Mr. Wolf wants prescribers to check a patient database every time they write a prescription to make sure patients haven't been prescribed too many opioids already. He wants to cap emergency department prescriptions of opioids to a seven-day supply, a measure that would force prescribers to reevaluate a patient's status if he or she showed up again- at a hospital or practice- seeking more painkillers. …

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