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Frankfort Local News

Return of Original Rx Pill Bill Starts a New Fight Over the Issue

A change to the so-called pill bill in Frankfort has restarted the fight over the measure in the General Assembly.

Prescription abuse is rampant in Kentucky, and the bill strengthens restrictions on the drugs and who can sell them. The measure didn’t clear the General Assembly during this year’s regular session, and lawmakers have been called in for a special session to reconsider the legislation.

The House has decided to return the bill to its original form and ignore the last-minute compromise that was left on the table at the end of the regular session.

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Local News Politics

Beshear, Rogers to Speak at Prescription Drug Abuse Summit

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear and U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers are among several elected officials slated to speak about prescription drug abuse this week at a conference in Florida.

The National Rx Drug Abuse Summit is organized by the Kentucky-based Operation UNITE. It aims to address the growing problem of prescription drug abuse in the southeastern United States.

The event kicks off tomorrow with Rogers’s remarks and a keynote from the U.S. Drug Czar. Beshear will speak afterward during a general session. Seminars during the conference focus on identifying prescription abuse issues, educating the public on the dangers of drug abuse and providing ideas for how states can track and fight illegal prescriptions. Officials from the federal government will also speak, as will elected officers from other states dealing with prescription abuse problems, including Florida and West Virginia.

Beshear has often encouraged state lawmakers to pass laws that crack down on so-called pill mills, which illegally deal prescription drugs. A bill the governor championed this year is expected to be put to a vote Thursday, on the last day of the current state legislative session.

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Local News

Kentucky To Join Prescription Monitoring Program

By Brenna Angel, Kentucky Public Radio

Kentucky’s prescription monitoring program will soon link up with other databases in other states.

The governor’s office announced Tuesday that Kentucky will sign an agreement with the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy to join the InterConnect, a network of prescription monitoring programs across the country. The Commonwealth joins 20 other states taking part in the InterConnect.

“Indiana, Ohio, and Virginia are up and running and sharing, and West Virginia is very soon to come on board. Which means that four of border states, hopefully we’ll be sharing data with very soon,”
said Dave Hopkins, manager of Kentucky’s prescription monitoring program known as KASPER.

A multi-state information exchange allows doctors and pharmacists to easily track where patients are getting their controlled substances. It can help spot doctor-shoppers and possible drug abuse. NABP is providing the InterConnect as a free service for at least five years.

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Local News Noise & Notes Politics

Beshear Considering Mandatory Pill-Tracking System

After testifying before a U.S. House committee on the so-called pill pipeline, Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear says the state needs to consider making its prescription drug tracking system mandatory.

On Thursday, Beshear addressed lawmakers about illegal pills abused in eastern Kentucky. Federal law enforcement officials estimate that 60 percent of those prescription come directly from Florida.

After first opposing it, Florida Governor Rick Scott this week promised to create a prescription tracking system similar to Kentucky’s. The database shows all scheduled prescriptions for individual patients, doctors and pharmacies.

But Beshear says the program could be even stronger.

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Local News

Prescription Drug Toss This Weekend Across The U.S.

(Thanks to Alan Lytle, Kentucky Public Radio)

People who want to get rid of old prescription or other medications have a chance to do so safely this weekend.

Police across the country are sponsoring the Take Back Initiative, which allows people to drop off unwanted or expired drugs.

Kentucky State Police Lieutenant David Jude says the drugs will be accepted from 10:00am to 2:00pm Saturday at locations around the state.

“One of the things that makes this program unique is that it’s free, and that it’s anonymous. And we’re not going to be asking for identification. We’re not going to be asking any questions with it.   The only thing we’re asking that if you’ll bring your medication, and let us dispose of it properly.”

The drugs can be disposed of at any Kentucky State Police post. In Lousiville, the dropoff sites are Jewish Hospital Southwest, Jefferson Mall and Olympia Park Plaza.