Law to cap opioid prescriptions goes into effect Friday

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — If you have an opioid prescription, things are about to change. A bill that will shorten prescriptions to just seven days has been approved and will go into effect Friday.

Mothers held photos, telling tragic stories of losing children to heroin, an addiction they say started with pain pills, as Governor Malloy signed a new law hoping to cut down on the number of opioid pain pills on the street. Starting Friday, the new Connecticut law restricts doctors and only allows them them to prescribe seven days worth of opioid pain medicine at a time.

Sen. Dante Bartolomeo representing Middletown and Meriden, says she believes doctors were way over-prescribing the pain pills.

“We have been hearing that often if a child is going to have their wisdom teeth out, that is something that is really common, they will give a 30-day supply and there is just no need for that,” said Bartolomeo.

Dr. Craig Allen is the Medical Director at Rushford. He believes the lawmakers are on the right track and it is a step in the right direction as they’re able to get as many loose pills as they can off the street.

“The research shows that 3 to 5 days worth of these opioid pain medications is generally enough for a surgical procedure,” said Allen.

Dr. Allen says if there is still significant pain after 3 to 5 days, the patient should see the doctor anyway, not take more pain pills, because the pain pills are dangerously addictive, and can hide bigger health problems.

“It’s not masked by a larger prescription of pills, which someone may take or they may not take and they go on the shelf and they go in the medicine cabinet and then they get out on the street,” said Allen.

The law also allows all first responders to carry Narcan, a life-saving drug for someone overdosing on heroin.

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