Report: One-Third of Massachusetts Doctors Not Checking Opioid Database - NECN


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Report: One-Third of Massachusetts Doctors Not Checking Opioid Database



    Police, Drug Users Warn of Fentanyl

    Hanging out on Boston Common, Sean Seith and self-described addict Bianca Telheiro hadn't heard about the warning from Boston Police -- that there are pills shaped and stamped to look just like Oxycodone, but are actually the far more potent fentanyl. (Published Thursday, June 23, 2016)

    The Massachusetts Department of Public Health says about a third of doctors are not checking the state's opioid tracking system when they write prescriptions, despite a new law mandating them to do so.

    The Boston Herald reports that in the first six months of 2017, 6,200 of the 18,700 doctors who wrote prescriptions didn't search the prescription tracking system, known as MassPAT.

    A 2016 law requires Massachusetts doctors to check the system to combat doctor-shopping and the opioid epidemic.

    The newspaper reports that of the group that skipped checking the database, most were doctors who infrequently prescribe opioids. Doctors who prescribed opiods frequently conducted searches 88 percent of the time.

    Officials said they believed many who didn't perform searches were covered under exemptions, such as providing hospice care.

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