Missouri Governor Eric Greitens signed an executive order earlier today to establish a prescription drug monitoring program in the state.
For years Missouri lawmakers have debated various legislation to establish a program to combat doctor shopping and prescription opioid addiction, but without success. Both the Missouri State Medical Association and the St. Louis Metropolitan Medical Society have advocated for such a program for a number of years.
In 2016, St. Louis County passed a county-level program via legislation authored by St. Louis County Councilman Dr. Sam Page, anesthesiologist, a SLMMS member. Other Missouri counties have joined the St. Louis County program and it now covers 58 percent of Missouri’s population.
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, it is not immediately clear how Governor Greitens’ proposed program will operate. The program will be run by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services with assistance from Express Scripts at an estimated start-up cost of $250,000.
Much is still to be determined, but according to Dr. Page, initial review of the executive order is that this is a law enforcement tool meant to review physician prescribing, and refer to law enforcement and licensing boards.
SLMMS encourages its members to continue to use the St. Louis County based Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. The county-based PDMP is not impacted by the state executive order and remains to help doctors take care of patients.
To review the Executive Order, click HERE
To review the St. Louis Post Dispatch coverage of today’s announcement, click HERE
To review FOX 2 News coverage of the announcement, click HERE
For more information about the St. Louis County PDMP click HERE