State senator reacts to Michigan e-prescription law

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Michigan state Sen. Dale Zorn (R-Ida) is pleased legislation that requires opioid prescriptions to be transmitted electronically from a doctor to a pharmacy, which was recently signed into law.

Zorn sponsored the bill, which applies to prescriptions for controlled substances containing opioids or benzodiazepines.

“This is a good law that will leverage e-prescribing to improve patient safety and efficient access to necessary medications,” Zorn said. “Importantly, it will also help combat the opioid abuse epidemic that still plagues Monroe County by essentially eliminating so-called ‘doctor shopping.’”

E-prescribing uses a technological system to write and transmit prescriptions to a participating pharmacy. At least 23 states require e-prescribing with certain exemptions, according to a Senate Fiscal Agency analysis.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer also signed into law a bill requiring electronic prescribing of all prescription drugs in the state by Oct. 1, 2021.

Pharmacists must follow standards while considering prescriptions, including frequent prescriptions for the same drug from one prescriber for a larger number of patients.

If prescribers cannot meet the electronic transmission requirements, they can apply for a waiver from the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. Exemptions will be for technological limitations, not within the prescribers’ control.

The bill was sponsored by Sen. Ruth Johnson (R-Holly).

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