Florida's opioid fight: Bill would require providers check PDMP before prescribing

The bill unanimously passed a state house committee on Wednesday and would set limits to the number of days a provider can prescribe initial opioid medications.
By Jessica Davis
02:44 PM
Florida opioid PDMP bill

Florida’s House Health and Human Services committee unanimously passed a bill focused on combating the state’s opioid epidemic, moving the state one step closer to requiring providers to check the state’s prescription drug monitoring program database before prescribing opioids.

HB 21 would also enforce limits on the number of days a provider can prescribe controlled substances for initial prescriptions. The majority of initial opioid prescriptions would be limited to three days, but the bill also gives up to seven days for acute pain exceptions.

Patients with chronic pain or cancer aren’t included in the proposed legislation.

[Also: Michigan law requires providers check state's PDMP before prescribing opioids]

Further, all healthcare professionals would be required to participate in a statewide database that would monitor their prescribing habits. And prescribers must complete a board-approved two-hour continuing education course on how to safely prescribe controlled substances.

The bill would also expand the data captured by the PDMP, including patient contact information and details of those approved to pick up prescriptions on behalf of the patient. If passed, it would also authorize the department of health to share and exchange data with other states.

If passed, it would also allow PDMP details to be included in EHR data. A similar bill has equal support in the Florida Senate and now moves to the floor for a vote.

Florida is the latest state moving toward more stringent prescribing laws. On Jan. 30, Nebraska became the first state to require all drugs be reported to the PDMP.

Michigan signed a similar bill into law on Dec. 27, which requires providers check the PDMP before prescribing opioids and adds limits to the number of opioids allowed to be prescribed. And Virginia is currently contemplating a similar bill.

Twitter: @JessieFDavis
Email the writer: jessica.davis@himssmedia.com