St. Louis establishes prescription drug monitoring program

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ST. LOUIS (KPLR) – St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay will sign a bill Tuesday to officially establish a prescription drug monitoring program within the city limits; the effort follows a similar move by county leaders.

Mayor Slay and other city leaders will gather at the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse for the signing of Board Bill 36.

The legislation will enable leaders in the city and county to put together a cohesive system for tracking the purchase of prescription drugs, with the main focus being the tracking of prescription opioid painkillers that people can abuse or overuse.

The bill sets up a system where certain prescription drug buys are monitored in a computer database. The database will alert doctors and pharmacists if someone is trying to obtain prescriptions for opioid drugs from multiple locations.

St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger signed the county’s bill on this issue into law back in March. He’s expected to be in attendance for the bill signing.

Prescription drug abuse is one of the fastest growing drug problems in America and has been classified by the CDC is an epidemic. The CDC supports prescription drug monitoring programs as a tool to help combat prescription painkiller abuse.

Local authorities said prescription painkiller abuse often escalates into heroin abuse.