Bill Proposes Police Access To Painkiller Prescription Database

Jun 11, 2018

Credit FLICKR/ US DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

RALEIGH, N.C. — A proposal in North Carolina's legislature would let law officers access a statewide database recording who is prescribing controlled drugs from morphine to codeine.

The Raleigh News & Observer reports the move is part of the General Assembly's efforts to grapple with the opioid epidemic. State officials say more than 13,000 North Carolinians have died from opioid-related overdoses since 1999.

The database exists to see if a patient is getting controlled substances from multiple doctors. The information is purged every six years, limiting how far back law enforcement would be able to look. 

The North Carolina American Civil Liberties Union said such a law would be the first of its kind in the nation to allow law enforcement officers quick access to the system. The bill has been introduced in the General Assembly and has the support of Attorney General Josh Stein.