Law brings needed solutions to the opioid abuse epidemic.
ARLINGTON, Va. – The National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) is recognizing the leadership of the Missouri Pharmacy Association, the Missouri Retailers Association, Missouri state legislators, Governor Mike Parson (R) and bill sponsor Senator David Sater (R) – a pharmacist – for the enactment of pro-patient, pro-pharmacy, and pro-public-health provisions in legislation that advances pharmacy scope of practice, enhances patient access to care, and contributes solutions to the opioid abuse epidemic.
The NACDS-backed provisions included in SB 826 will enable children seven years and older to access vaccinations in community pharmacies (down from age twelve previously). The law also addresses opioid concerns by limiting opioid prescriptions to seven days for acute pain (with exceptions) and enabling community pharmacies to voluntarily take back medicines in accordance with federal law.
“With the enactment of these programs, Governor Parson and Senator Sater have taken significant action to curb the opioid abuse crisis,” said NACDS president and chief executive officer Steven Anderson. “NACDS is grateful to the Missouri Pharmacy Association—especially CEO Ron Fitzwater—for its leadership on these landmark legislative achievements, in addition to the Missouri Retailers Association, and NACDS-member pharmacies in Missouri for sharing their firsthand experiences with lawmakers from their vantage point on the frontlines of healthcare delivery.”
NACDS also extends thanks for their hard work on this legislation to Rep. Lynn Morris (R), House sponsor of the bill; Rep. Robert Ross (R), the House bill handler; Rep. Mike Stephens (R); and Rep. Travis Fitzwater (R).
A poll conducted by Morning Consult and commissioned by NACDS in January 2018 found 72 percent of Missouri voters support limiting the initial fill of certain opioid prescriptions to seven days. Additionally, 83 percent of Missouri voters have a favorable opinion of their pharmacist.
The legislation aligns with several public policy recommendations announced by NACDS, and with NACDS’ comments to the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis. NACDS advocates for recommendations based on pharmacists’ experience on the frontlines of healthcare and based on pharmacy’s ongoing collaboration with law enforcement and health professionals on the complex issue of opioid-abuse prevention. The public policy recommendations complement pharmacy’s existing and extensive work, including: compliance programs; pioneering e-prescribing; drug disposal; patient education; security initiatives; fostering naloxone access; stopping illegal online drug-sellers and rogue clinics; and more.