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Speaker Mesnard Applauds Passage of Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act Featured

By Matthew Specht January 26, 2018 399

The Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act passed unanimously on Thursday. Governor Ducey will be holding a signing ceremony today at 11.

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Speaker of the House J.D. Mesnard (R-17) applauded passage of the Arizona Opioid Epidemic Act. 

“I’m extremely proud that my colleagues from both parties set aside partisan differences and worked together to ensure Arizonans get the tools they need to combat our opioid epidemic,” said Speaker Mesnard. “Arizona, like the rest of the country, is facing a true crisis when it comes to opioid addiction, which is why it was so encouraging to see the high-level of cooperation between Governor Ducey and the Legislature to swiftly and thoroughly address this issue.”

Major provisions of the bill include:

  • Limiting the initial fill of an opioid prescription to five days and restricting dosage levels to align with federal prescribing guidelines, while providing exemptions for cancer, trauma, and end-of-life patients, as well as those receiving medication-assisted treatment.

  • Allowing law enforcement or corrections officers to administer the overdose reversal drug Naloxone;

  • Enacting a Good Samaritan law for those reporting a potential opioid overdose;

  • Requiring insurance companies to provide patients with a decision on prior authorization within a maximum of 14 days, and within 5 days for urgent health care services, thereby reducing the amount of time patients need opioids to manage pain before receiving medical procedures, and requiring insurance companies to allow at least one form of medication assisted treatment be available without prior authorization;

  • Expanding access to treatment, including for uninsured or underinsured Arizonans, with $10 million in new funding;

  • Preventing forged prescriptions by requiring electronic prescribing and requiring all pharmacists to check the Controlled Substances Prescription Monitoring Program prior to dispensing an opioid;

  • Requiring continuing medical education for most medical professions that prescribe opioids;

  • Ending pill mills, increasing oversight, and enacting criminal penalties for opioid manufacturers who defraud the public.

  • Appropriating $800,000 for opioid prevention and education.


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Last modified on Sunday, 28 January 2018 15:11
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