From the Public News Service:
Federal health authorities say prescription drug abuse is the nation’s fastest-growing drug problem. This week, doctors and nurses working in Oregon hospital emergency rooms have adopted new guidelines to try to curb the abuse of prescription painkillers. They say that every day, they walk a fine line between addressing patients’ real pain issues and playing into the hands of those who are addicted to the drugs or selling them.
Oregon has a relatively new Prescription Drug Monitoring Program to help prevent multiple prescriptions going to the same person, and emergency room physician Dr. Sharon Meieran says the additional guidelines will help.
“This isn’t something we’re doing to be punitive or to deny people treatment. It really is a huge public safety and public health issue right now and, you know, we want to be part of the solution.”
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