Washington takes lead in preventing prescription drug deaths


The Inlander reported in January that prescription drugs were killing more and more people in Spokane County every year. Today, the New York Times reports that Washington state is taking the lead in regulating how doctors prescribe such powerful, addictive drugs as OxyContin, fentanyl and methadone.

"The effort, in Washington State, represents the most sweeping attempt yet to stem what some experts see as the excessive use of prescribed narcotics, and it is being closely watched by medical professionals elsewhere," today's article says. "Among other things, Washington would apparently become the first state that would require a doctor to refer patients on escalating doses of pain killers for evaluation if they were not improving."

Read NYT article here, and The Inlander article here

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