No opioids, please: Clearing the way to refuse prescriptions

Massachusetts and Pennsylvania passed similar legislation last year

Oxycontin, a powerful painkiller, hit the market two decades ago with bold promises, including 12-hour relief for chronic pain. Some of those promises, however, may have been false and deceptive.

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – A growing number of states are working to help patients make it clear to medical professionals they don’t want to be prescribed powerful opioids.

Connecticut and Alaska are two of the latest considering legislation this year that would create a non-opioid directive that patients can put in their medical files. It formally notifies health care professionals the person does not want be prescribed or administered the medications.

Pharmacist Association wants stricter prescription laws

Massachusetts and Pennsylvania passed similar legislation last year.

While patients typically have the right to make decisions about their medical care, proponents of the directives contend such documents make a patient’s wishes clear, especially in advance of medical care. Proponents say such directives also empower those patients who might fear relapsing into addiction or becoming addicted to the drugs in the first place.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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