Drug monitoring program producing results six weeks into its launchJust six weeks into Wisconsin’s new prescription drug monitoring program, 4.5 million records have been filed into the website.
By: By Mike Simonson, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
Just six weeks into Wisconsin’s new prescription drug monitoring program, 4.5 million records have been filed into the website.
That number is expected to double by the end of the year.
The prescription drug monitoring program is run by the Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) to see if people are getting pain killers from different doctors. DSPS Secretary Dave Ross says it’s a great tool for both law enforcement and prescribers. He thinks the number of people dying from prescription drug abuse will drop.
Dr. Matt Horning is a family medicine practitioner at the Chequamegon Clinic in Ashland. He’s already found a few of his patients who are loading up on pain-killers from other doctors: “It’s always a surprise,” he says.
The Ashland area has been hard-hit: In one six-month stretch in 2009, four people died of prescription drug overdoses. That led to a local task force that helped create the prescription drug monitoring program.
Horning says it’s working: “It helps you keep patients safe and not add to this problem of addiction and dependency and diversion of prescription drugs for non-medical uses.”