State health officials are reminding health care providers of a new law requiring they check the state's new online prescription monitoring program before prescribing opioids and other drugs that have high potential for abuse.
The law took effect on Saturday and is part of the state's new substance abuse prevention law signed by Gov. Charlie Baker in March.
Under the new law, health care providers are required to use the new Massachusetts Prescription Awareness Tool each time they prescribe a federally controlled Schedule II or III narcotic drug.
The state launched the new MassPAT tool in August which health officials describe as an improved system that is user-friendly, quicker and allows the sharing of prescription history data with prescription monitoring programs in 20 other states.