State Lawmaker Fights for Drug Database

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A state lawmaker from south St. Louis hopes his bill to track prescriptions for opioids will save lives. Democrat Fred Wessels, who represents Missouri’s 81st District in the House, says right now people are getting hooked on prescription painkillers because the system is too loose.

“Number one it’s going to decrease doctor shopping immediately. We have folks that are going to four, five, six different doctors and getting the pain relievers,” he says.

Wessel’s bill passed the House, and the Senate passed a similar bill, with one big difference. The Senate version would only keep a six month database of who’s getting opioid prescriptions. Wessels says the names need to be kept for at least a year to prevent doctor shopping.

“The amendment restricts the time which drug information can be contained on an individual to six months. We need at least 12 months for the physicians to get a better idea,” he says.

The House-Senate conference committee is trying to work out a compromise.

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