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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Kentucky guv glad Florida changed its mind on the pill mill tracking



Kentucky Gov. Steven Beshear said today he was "every excited and pleased" to hear that Florida is now moving ahead with a prescription drug database to crack down on pill mills. Gov. Rick Scott had opposed the move, but told reporters Thursday he's not going to block a push to get it running.

"Obviously there is no single answer to the problem," said Beshear who said an average of 82 Kentuckians die every month from drug overdoses. "But that is a very effective tool, it's proven to be very effective in this area."

Beshear, who lobbied Scott on the measure, said it's his goal for all 50 states to have such databases because "when we do it, it will cut down significantly on the illegal use of these drugs."

Scott wouldn't call himself a "reluctant champion" of the data base, but said Florida law last year required it and he won't stop it. But he said he'd focus on ensuring patient privacy is protected. He said he believes cracking down on manufacturers and distributors will have a bigger effect.

"The way to deal with this is to focus on how it's being distributed," he said. "That's going to be the big impact."

-- Lesley Clark, Miami Herald

[Last modified: Thursday, April 14, 2011 11:25am]


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