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Sun Nov 18, 2012, 08:06 AM

Maine doctors requiring random drug tests before writing prescriptions for pain pills [View all]

Source: BDN

In an effort to combat Maine’s high rate of prescription drug addiction, doctors are asking patients to sign a controlled-substances agreement that, in part, allows the doctor to ask for a blood or urine sample at any time to ensure patients are taking their pills, rather than selling them, and are taking those pills only.

Patients who don’t sign likely won’t get prescriptions. And those who fail the test will have some explaining to do.

“Everybody is under pressure to have policies that do everything they can to tighten up the prescribing of opiates,” said Gordon Smith, executive vice president of the Maine Medical Association.

Maine has had a prescription drug problem for years. The state has the highest per-capita rate of opiate addiction in the nation, and more Mainers are seeking treatment for painkillers than for alcohol. The number of babies born with opiate withdrawal symptoms has skyrocketed. And this week Maine had its 50th pharmacy robbery of 2012, a crime that experts say is directly tied to prescription drug addiction. Maine had half that number of robberies in 2011; not long ago it had none.

Read more: http://bangordailynews.com/2012/11/18/health/maine-doctors-requiring-random-drug-tests-before-writing-prescriptions-for-pain-pills/

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Reply Maine doctors requiring random drug tests before writing prescriptions for pain pills [View all]
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