|House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg,
sponsored the prescription drug bill.
A controversial bill aimed at curbing prescription drug abuse, which was considered by many as the hallmark of the 2012 General Assembly, is creating tension as its implementation draws nearer. It takes effect July 20.
House Bill 1 puts more restrictions on pain clinics to prevent so-called pill mills from setting up shop in the state. It also requires doctors who prescribe controlled substances to use the state’s drug-monitoring system known as KASPER. It further requires licensing boards to set up standards to increase oversight and spell out how doctors should be using KASPER. “But many of the details remain uncertain — including how frequently doctors must run searches of patients — and several areas are poised to drive a wedge between the medical industry and lawmakers in the coming months,” reports Mike Wynn for The Courier-Journal.
The Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure has written a draft proposal with dozens of new rules that have prompted confusion and anger among physicians. House Speaker Greg Stumbo, the bill’s sponsor, has questioned the move. “What it appears to me they are doing is almost making it over burdensome to practitioners, and one might argue that is an attempt to make the entire system fail,” he said.
Given the anticipated impasse, some expect Gov. Steve Beshear “to sign emergency regulations that will achieve at least some of the goals of HB 1, but those would expire within six months and wouldn’t be subject to a prior review process,” Wynn reports. (Read more)