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Bellino remains committed to fight against opioids

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first_img21Feb Bellino remains committed to fight against opioids Categories: Bellino News Legislator: E-scripts eliminate fraud and doctor shoppingState Rep. Joe Bellino has introduced a plan to cut down on fraudulent prescriptions and combat Michigan’s growing opioid abuse epidemic.The legislation calls on doctors to send all prescriptions through a secure computer system, preventing anyone but the doctor from issuing prescriptions.“This practice holds doctors accountable and cuts down on bad actors and double-prescribers,” said Bellino, an addict in recovery for more than two decades. “Between 3 and 9 percent of opioid abusers use forged prescriptions. E-scripts would prevent forgeries and the overdose deaths that can result from them.”Bellino said the plan also reduces the number of prescription errors caused by illegible handwriting and detects inappropriate prescribing of opioids and other medical errors. Studies show that e-prescribing also reduces doctor shopping, the practice of getting narcotic prescriptions from multiple doctors.“The cost of doing nothing is far too great for us to stand by and watch opioid dependence and overdose continue to take lives across the state,” Bellino said. “There were 1,762 opioid-related deaths in Michigan in 2016. Something has to change.”During the 2017-18 term, Bellino sponsored a number of other opioid-reform policies, including a locking vial to prevent drug abuse and a requirement for doctors to inform parents of minors about the dangers of opioids prior to prescribing. He also supported measures requiring doctors to consult the Michigan Automated Prescription System (MAPS) to verify a patient has not shown any signs of being an abuser before prescribing opioids and to require schools to instruct students on the dangers of opioids, as well as several other measures.House Bill 4217 was referred to the House Health Policy Committee for consideration.###last_img read more