State Representatives Robert Sprague (R-Findlay) and Denise Driehaus (D-Cincinnati) this week introduced the Prescription Narcotics Medical Necessity bill, which will put safeguards in the Medicaid system to promote responsible narcotics prescribing practices.

House Bill 250 makes it a requirement to document that a narcotic prescription is medically necessary when it exceeds normal use.

“Prescription narcotics use in Ohio’s medical system has increased tenfold over the past decade, causing a massive increase in narcotics addiction,” said Representative Sprague.  “Maine’s Medicaid program enacted similar rules and saw narcotic prescriptions drop by a third.  If Ohio has similar results, we would see a dramatic drop in our narcotic epidemic by attacking the source of these pills.”

Among other provisions, House Bill 250 will require Medicaid providers or prescribers seeing Medicaid patients to show medical necessity when prescribing opioids for more than 10 days for acute pain, 72 hours from an emergency department, and 80 MED (morphine equivalent dosage) for chronic pain.

Representative Sprague has been a leader in the fight against Ohio’s addiction problem.  By continuing the work that was completed over the last few years, House Bill 250 was introduced as part of a package of bills to address Ohio’s drug problem.  The other bills include House Bill 4,  House Bill 248, House Bill 249, and House Bill 251. 

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