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Make your voice heard – sweeping changes coming for opioid prescriptions

Thursday, October 26, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: DCMS
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TALLAHASSEE, FL – This week, representatives from the Duval County Medical Society were in Tallahassee speaking directly with lawmakers who are proposing sweeping changes in the way that opioids are prescribed in Florida. The measures, proposed by Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto and Rep. Jim Boyd would impact virtually every practice in Florida, and the Duval County Medical Society is your voice at the table as these changes.


Steven Kailes, MD, Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto, and Alan Miller, MD discussed SB 8 on Monday just hours after it was submitted to the Florida Senate

This week, Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto introduced SB 8, a measure that would impact the way every Florida physician prescribes opioids. The bill is more than 100 pages long and you can read it in its entirety here, but here are a few of the key points:

  • Prescriptions for non-malignant pain opioid naïve patients will be limited to three days, with an option to extend to seven days if deemed medically necessary.
  • Mandatory lookup in the Prescription Drug Monitoring Database (PDMP) for every patient and prescription
  • A new mandatory two credit CME required for physicians who prescribe
  • $50 million in budgetary allocation to go towards treatment and recovery efforts.


DCMS Chief Executive Officer Bryan Campbell, Steven Kailes, MD, Senator Rob Bradley, and Alan Miller, MD also met in Tallahassee to discuss issues related to healthcare.

Representatives from Clay, Duval and Nassau County Medical Societies convened a Task Force last week to address the physician role in curbing the opioid crisis, and had the opportunity to review key aspects of the legislation before it was filed. This week, physicians representing this Task Force met with several key legislators in Tallahassee to show support for the effort, and to offer suggestions on ensuring that the well-intentioned law does not have negative unintended consequences.

We are pleased to report that several key issues brought forth by the Task Force are under consideration in the bill including:

  • Enhancement of the PDMP to make it significantly more user-friendly
  • Inclusion of physician extenders into access to the PDMP
  • Partnership with a multi-state cooperative to pull Prescription data from multiple states
  • Inclusion of PDMP data in Electronic Medical Records by 2020
  • An option for the newly required Opioid CME to replace one of the existing mandatory CME’s for license renewal

The Task Force will continue to meet regularly throughout the legislative process and will work with the Duval Medical Society to provide education and training immediately following the Legislative Session for physicians in Duval County.