Counties Support Data Sharing to Help Local Health Departments Address Opiod Crisis

MACo Legislative Director Natasha Mehu submitted testimony to the Senate Finance Committee to support SB 710 – Health – General – Prescription Drug Monitoring Program – County Health Officer. This bill would strengthen local health departments’ ability to help identify and deter prescription drug abuse and diversion as the state continues to struggle with an opioid crisis.

From the MACo Testimony:

SB 710 adds a local health department (or local health officer) to the list of people and entities that must receive Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) data for the purpose of evaluating the distribution or abuse of a monitored  prescription drug. It also authorizes the PDMP to request a review, guidance, and interpretation of information before it is given to the local health department.

Counties believe the PDMP can be improved by expanding PDMP access to local health departments and local health officers. These officers play a significant role in addressing the opioid crisis in each of Maryland’s 24 jurisdictions. Access to PDMP data would enable them to share vital information and best practices with identified prescribers, and increase awareness and improve intervention efforts in cases of patients who may be doctor shopping.

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2020 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database.