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THE PENNSYLVANIA PRESCRIPTION DRUG MONITORING PROGRAM

On June 30, 2016, the Achieving Better Care by Monitoring All Prescriptions Program Act (ABC-MAP) went into effect. http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/li/uconsCheck.cfm?yr=2014&sessInd=0&act=191 . This Act provides for prescription drug monitoring and places requirements on pharmacists and physicians to use the new electronic system.

Dispensers, typically pharmacists, are now required to electronically submit within 72 hours the following information to the system regarding each controlled substances dispensed:

1. The full name of the prescriber;

2. the prescriber's DEA registration number;

3. the date the prescription was written;

4. the date the prescription was dispensed;

5. the full name, date of birth, gender and address of the person for whom the prescription was written and dispensed;

6. the national drug code;

7. the quantity and day's supply;

8. the DEA registration number and national provider identifier of the dispenser or pharmacy;

9. and the method of payment for the prescription.

The prescriber, a doctor or healthcare provider who is licensed, registered or otherwise lawfully authorized to distribute, dispense or administer a controlled substance must query the system:

1. For each patient the first time the patient is prescribed a controlled substance by the prescriber for purposes of establishing a baseline and a thorough medical record; or

2. If a prescriber believes or has reason to believe, using sound clinical judgment, that a patient may be abusing or diverting drugs.

The prescriber must indicate the information obtained from the system in the patient's record if the individual is a new patient or the prescriber determines a drug should not be prescribed or furnished to a patient based upon the information from the system.

Given the fact that there is a huge opiate problem in Pennsylvania, as well as around the country, I expect there will be increased scrutiny of doctors and pharmacists by the Office of Attorney General, the agency responsible for enforcement of this Act.

I spoke with an agent yesterday who informed me that this past weekend alone, he received five (5) new cases which were a direct result of the new prescription drug monitoring program.

If you are a pharmacist, physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner, please read this Act. You can click through to the first sentence of this blog to obtain a copy of the Act.

The Act also provides for criminal penalties for those who knowingly or intentionally obtain or attempt to obtain information from the system for purposes other than those enumerated in the Act.

If you have any questions about the Act, feel free to contact me. If you are contacted by an agent for the Office of Attorney General regarding your prescribing or dispensing practices, I strongly suggest that you contact me before speaking to the agent.

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If you are a licensed nurse, doctor, dentist, pharmacist or any other professional in Pennsylvania, call The Law Offices of Brian E. Quinn for help. Based in Philadelphia, our attorneys have decades of experience in the fields of professional license defense, criminal defense and family law.

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