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Opioid bills head to the governor’s desk

Flickr User Jamie

Legislation aimed at curbing the state’s opioid crisis is on its way to the governor.

The goal of the legislation is to stop doctor shopping and pill mills. The bills put new limits and requirements on people trying to get certain prescriptions. One bill would require patients show a relationship with the physician who prescribes their opiates.

Democratic Senator Steve Bieda is a bill sponsor. He says requiring a relationship will help prevent “doctor shopping.”

“You’ve got some doctors that are maybe less scrupulous than most doctors are and you start to have a lot of these drugs enter the system.”

Democratic Representative LaTanya Garrett voted against some of the bills. She says there should be exemptions for some medications that fall under the opioid category, but don’t have the effect of opioids.

“We are attempting to solve a problem with one group of people, but we are causing harm to another group. In particular, the epileptic patient.”

Republican Senator Tonya Schuitmaker is a bill sponsor.

“It’s very concerning when we have more prescriptions for opioids written than the population of this state. People are dying every single day from opioid-related deaths.”

The bills are on their way to the governor’s desk.