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Opioid crisis: How Florida bill HB21 can affect you

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In an effort to combat the national opioid crisis Governor Rick Scott signed earlier this year the HB21 law which creates new limits on schedule II prescriptions for pain medication and other controlled substances.

The new law puts a 3-day limit on most prescriptions for acute pain.  The doctor may prescribe up to a 7-day supply if he or she determines it is medically necessary. The new bill that takes effect July 1st contains some of the nation’s toughest mandates on initial prescriptions for Schedule II painkillers such as Oxycontin and Fentanyl.  This system will require prescribers to use the Florida Prescription Drug Monitoring Program, a statewide database of controlled substance prescriptions. The law (Section 456.44(3)(d), F.S.) does require that a prescribing practitioner see a patient being treated with controlled substances for chronic nonmalignant pain at least once every three months. It also also ramps up penalties for doctors that give out drugs without proper medical justification.

The HB21 law also changes regulations involving the prescription of other controlled substances such as:

  1.  Sleeping pills (Ambien/zolpidem, Restoril/temazepam, Valium/diazepam etc.)
  2.  Stimulant medications (Vyvanse, Adderall etc.)
  3.  Weight loss medications (Phentermine, Diethylpropion etc.)
  4.  Hormones (Testosterone)

Given the changes detailed above our office will adopt the following controlled medication prescription and refill policies:

Medication Prescription and Refill Policies

  • No controlled prescriptions will be refilled after-hours or on Saturdays, Sundays or Holidays.
  • We require 24 hours minimum to process prescription(s) renewal and/or pick-up requests for controlled prescription medications.
  • All patients requiring a controlled prescription medication should have an updated “controlled medication agreement” on file.

 

Our goal is to provide you excellent healthcare while fully complying with the new state requirements on controlled prescription medications. To minimize any inconvenience with controlled prescription refills please take the time to review when your upcoming refills are due.   We have selected several articles below which will provide you more information on these changes. Please click on the icons below to read more about this topic. This includes a Q&A from the Florida department of Health which will help answer most questions you may have about this subject. We look forward to hearing from you with any questions or concerns.

 

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