KNOXVILLE, Tenn.-- Starting Monday, Tennessee doctors prescribing painkillers and other controlled substances will be required to check their patients' prescription history to prevent abuse and doctor shopping.
The new requirement that was signed into law last year put doctors on the front line of Tennessee's battle with some of the nation's highest prescription drug abuse rates. The state's Controlled Substance Monitoring Database has been around since 2006 and now clinicians prescribing any opioid or benzodiazepine will be required to check that database first.
UT Medical Associate Professor G. Anthony Wilson says its a great idea, telling us. "one of the biggest problems we face is a rise in prescription drug overdoses."
UT Medical Center began the program several months early and has already discovered patients trying to scam the system.