Statement on Gov. John Hickenlooper’s signing of HB14-1283 and HB14-1207

Wednesday, May 21, 2014 08:05 AM
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For immediate release: May 21, 2014
Attributable to John L. Bender, MD, FAAFP, CMS President

John Bender, MD

John L. Bender, MD, FAAFP

  1. Colorado Medical Society strongly supports Gov. John Hickenlooper’s efforts to reverse the escalating trend of opioid abuse and misuse and its often tragic consequences in Colorado. CMS appointed a special Committee on Prescription Drug Abuse earlier this year and actively participates in the Colorado Consortium to Reduce Prescription Drug Abuse. The Society has been educating its members about the crisis over the past 15 months.
  2. The Colorado Medical Society applauds Gov. John Hickenlooper, Colorado elected officials, state agency representatives and other stakeholders for developing and passing legislation to update and upgrade the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program and to strengthen the Medication Take-Back Program. HB14-1283 removes barriers to effective utilization of the PDMP, helping prescribers and pharmacists make more informed decisions when considering prescribing and dispensing controlled substances to patients. This includes allowing a prescriber to designate up to three qualified staff to access the PDMP, which will streamline the process in physicians’ offices and result in better usage of the system. HB14-1207 creates a permanent infrastructure to collect and dispose of unused household medications.
  3. HB14-1283 and HB14-1207 are consistent with CMS’ long-term goals to assure access to compassionate, evidence-based care for patients who suffer from acute and chronic pain while significantly reducing the potential for medically inappropriate use and diversion of prescribed medications – that is, to help prevent the medical, psychological and social consequences, including addiction, overdose and death.
  4. Prescription drug abuse is a rapidly evolving crisis in medicine in Colorado and around the country. Yearly deaths in Colorado due to drug-related poisoning more than doubled from 2000 (351) to 2012 (807). Deaths involving the use of opioid analgesics more than tripled in the same time period, from 87 to 295. More than twice as many people in Colorado died from poisoning due to opioid analgesics in 2012 (295) than from drunk-driving related fatalities (133). And oxycodone prescriptions for Colorado residents increased 54.3 percent from the third quarter of 2007 through the third quarter of 2013.

Click here to read a press release about the bill signing event.

Posted in: Press Releases | Initiatives | Patient Safety and Professional Accountability


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