Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Florida database to track prescription drugs moves closer to reality

TALLAHASSEE — An effort to curb prescription drug abuse and stop South Florida's growing pain-clinic industry is headed to the House and Senate floors, after the proposal cleared a key House committee Monday.

Legislators on the House General Government and Health Care Appropriations Council signed off on a bill to create a prescription-drug tracking database, a system that would allow doctors — and, in some cases, police — to monitor the prescription history of those receiving addictive drugs.

A similar bill by Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, passed its final Senate committee stop last week, and the bill is poised to receive a vote in both chambers before the end of the legislative session.

"We have an epidemic in the state of Florida," said Rep. Kelly Skidmore, a Boca Raton Democrat, who is pushing the House proposal along with Reps. Marcelo Llorente, R-Miami, and Kurt Kelly, R-Ocala. "We are absolutely the pill mill for the rest of the country. … This bill solves that problem."

Thirty-eight states have prescription-drug tracking systems, but privacy worries have stalled efforts in Tallahassee, making Florida the largest state without one. Investigators say that has helped make the state a prime destination for pill addicts and drug dealers from around the country.

The scope of the problem has given the drug monitoring system added momentum this year, and the bill has cleared most of its committees with little debate.

Breanne Gilpatrick can be reached at [email protected]

Florida database to track prescription drugs moves closer to reality 04/20/09 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 21, 2009 1:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Datz to open in St. Petersburg, join the James Museum of Western and Wildlife Art

    Food & Dining

    Now Datz news.

    Get it? Tuesday, Datz, the longtime line-out-the-door, oft-Instagrammed and -Yelped Tampa stalwart known for shock-and-awe sandwiches and oh-so-much bacon, announced it is coming to St. Petersburg.

    Lunch guest eat at Datz Deli at 2616 South MacDill Ave. in Tampa. Times files.
  2. Republican leader McConnell pulls the plug on latest Obamacare repeal effort

    WASHINGTON --- Sen. Mitch McConnell on Tuesday officially pulled the plug on the latest plan to repeal the health care law, telling senators they will not vote on the measure and effectively admitting defeat in the last-gasp drive to fulfill a core promise of President Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers.

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky. listens during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017, after the Senate confirmed Betsy DeVos as education secretary. DeVos was approved by the narrowest of margins, with Vice President Mike Pence breaking a 50-50 tie in a historic vote. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) DCSA119
  3. Lightning's Brayden Point could be perfect fit alongside Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov

    Lightning Strikes

    SUNRISE — Brayden Point ended last season as the Lightning's No. 1 center, thrust into the role as a rookie due to injuries.

    Lightning center Brayden Point (21) advances the puck through the neutral zone during Friday's preseason game against the Nashville Predators. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
  4. For starters: Rays at Yankees, with Blake Snell starting, Wilson Ramos cashing in


    The Rays open their final road series of the season tonight at Yankee Stadium, which is also where they played their first of the season.

    LHP Blake Snell will be on the mound for the Rays, looking to continue his successful late-season run, in which he is 4-0, 2,57 over his last eight starts.

    Tonight marks Wilson Ramos' 55th start of the season.
  5. Cannon Fodder podcast: Considering Gerald McCoy's comments


    Greg Auman talks about Gerald McCoy's comments — both about fan criticism online and Donald Trump — in the latest episode of our Bucs Cannon Fodder podcast.

    Gerald McCoy, front, said Monday that he would love to have a conversation with any of the fans who take to social media to criticize him and his Bucs teammates. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]