Minnesota is looking for an easy way to track prescription pain medication abusers by comparing records submitted by physicians. Of course, the government will have access to the personal records of thousands of people who are not not abusing painkillers, but that should be OK with you right?
Starting this week, Minnesota residents who fill prescriptions for addictive drugs like Vicodin and OxyContin are going into a new state database.
The aim is to stop drug abusers and dealers from shopping around for prescriptions.
Pharmacies were required to start reporting to the Minnesota Prescription Monitoring Program on Monday. By March, doctors, dentists and pharmacists can use the system to identify patients who get too many habit-forming medicines.
The state database is expected to track more than a million prescriptions a year.
So, who else will have access to the system? How many patients will be denied medication they need because a pharmacist is uncomfortable handing out Vicodin to someone with the same or similar name? “Excuse me sir … are you John Smith or John Smithe?
The control of such substances belongs to pharmacies, but the prescription process is a private transaction. Why should the state involve itself in that transaction at all? Some people will abuse, but they comprise a tiny fraction of the hundreds of thousands of people who take medicine responsibly. This penalizes everyone, and invades the privacy of law-abiding citizens, in a nanny-state attempt to protect a few people from themselves.
Uh Ed, the nanny state does not care … that’s why they are the nanny state.