Smaltz: Opioid tracking bill signed into law

Smaltz: Opioid tracking bill signed into law

Posted by: Jake Thompsonj  | Tuesday, April 10, 2018

STATEHOUSE (April 10, 2018) — Gov. Eric Holcomb  ceremonially signed into law on Friday, April 6, 2018, legislation sponsored by State Rep. Ben Smaltz (R-Auburn) requiring doctors and pharmacists to check Indiana’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program database before prescribing or dispensing an opioid or benzodiazepine.

INSPECT is a statewide, comprehensive online platform medical professionals use to review patients’ controlled-substance prescription history. Smaltz said this law will eliminate "doctor shopping," or the practice of patients obtaining controlled substances from doctors without prior knowledge of other prescriptions.  

“By shutting down drug users’ ability to illegally obtain multiple prescriptions, or interdict their supply, we can help stop addiction before it starts or prevent unnecessary overdose deaths,” Smaltz said. “This law is just one more step to help Hoosiers and their families battle this terrible crisis.”

Smaltz said lawmakers this session implemented a three-pronged attack plan of treatment, interdiction and punishment to stem the tide of this growing crisis.  

“I supported a new law pairing opioid treatment centers with local hospitals and community mental health centers to provide wrap-around services like medical aid and counseling for Hoosiers beginning the recovery process,” Smaltz said. “Another new law focuses on punishment by increasing the penalty for drug dealers whose products cause death.”

To learn more about Senate Enrolled Act 221 and other laws combating the opioid epidemic, visit iga.in.gov.

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State Rep. Ben Smaltz (R-Auburn) represents all of DeKalb County, and portions of Steuben and Allen counties.

A high-resolution photo of Smaltz can be downloaded by clicking here.

Photo Caption: State Rep. Ben Smaltz (standing, second from left) is presented a pen used by Gov. Eric Holcomb (seated, second from left) to ceremonially sign a new law on Friday, April 6, 2018, at St. Francis Hospital in Indianapolis. Smaltz sponsored the new law to stem the tide of the opioid epidemic by preventing the practice of ‘doctor shopping,’ which is a technique some use to procure prescription drugs illicitly.