The government is cracking down on how doctors prescribe opioid painkillers like hydrocodone and other addictive drugs. Dr. Jeff Baldwin is the Vice-Chair of Education and a professor at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha and says this is due to an increasing number of deaths due to overdose. He says this will impact those who use the drugs but don’t abuse them.
Dr. Baldwin says physicians will need to write prescriptions for each refill and they will not be able to call them in to a pharmacy. He says the medical community has mixed opinions of the new restrictions.
Dr. Baldwin says the medications are very effective in treating pain but unfortunately they are also very addictive. He says the addiction is both physical and psychological and the new restrictions are aimed at preventing that from happening. He says the demand for hydrocodone as a street drug is very high and theft is a real concern. He recommends those with left over medication get rid of it when it is no longer needed. There are reports of children or grandchildren swiping the medication to use or sell. There have even been reports of medication theft during an open house in an attempt to sell a home.