Bill Proposing Patient Prescription Database Advances in State Legislature

California lawmakers are advancing a measure that cracks down on doctor shopping in response to the nation's ongoing opioid epidemic.

Supporters of this type of legislation include two San Diegans who were featured in an NBC 7 Investigates story about prescription drug overdoses.

The proposal by Democratic Sen. Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens requires that providers consult an existing database of patient prescription histories before recommending addictive drugs.

The Assembly approved it 79-0 Wednesday. Amendments to the measure must be approved by the Senate before it could move to the governor's desk.

Advocates say patients may gather several drug supplies from different providers if doctors don't check the state's database before writing prescriptions.

The measure requires health care practitioners to check before first prescribing drugs like OxyContin, Vicodin and fentanyl -- which musician Prince accidentally overdosed on in April -- and every four months thereafter for as long as the prescription is continued.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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