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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: January 4, 2021 02:58 PM
From: Representative Ed Neilson
To: All House members
Subject: Limiting Opioid Prescriptions
In 2018, Pennsylvania experienced 4,491 drug-related overdose deaths. This equates to 12 lives lost per day as well as 35 deaths per 100,000 residents over the course of the year. Additionally, the presence of an opioid was reported in 82% of drug-related overdoses. While several laws addressing the opioid and heroin epidemic have recently been enacted, providing even more protections for Pennsylvanians is of paramount importance.
Research has shown that long-term opioid use often begins with treatment for acute pain. For this reason, I will be introducing legislation that would confront the issue of addiction through the initial prescription for an opioid drug. Just as Act 125 of 2016 established safeguards for minors, this measure would limit opioid prescriptions to seven days for adults, with some exceptions, and require prescribers to discuss the risk of opioid addiction and the option of non-pharmacological alternatives with all of their patients, regardless of age.
Please join me in further protecting Pennsylvanians from the risk of opioid addiction as we combat one of the greatest public health crises of our time.