It is no wonder that legislators from the state of West Virginia have come together in an attempt to stop the skyrocketing prescription drug problem. Senator Jay Rockefeller, Senator Joe Manchin, and US Representative Nick Rahall, all from the state of West Virginia, are co-sponsoring legislation in the House and the Senate to try to establish some effective legal strategies for combating this deadly issue that is tearing apart families across their home state.
West Virginia has one of the largest prescription drug problems per capita in the US. In fact, 90 percent of the drug overdoses within the state’s borders are caused by prescription painkillers. However, West Virginia is not alone with this problem; all over the country, prescription drug use is taking lives and many Congressmen feel that some common sense guidelines need to be established for the safe use of these medications.
Congressmen Attempt to Come Up With Real World Solutions for Painkiller Epidemic
Senator Rockefeller told the press that in designing his new legislation he spoke with a wide array of professionals who are on the frontlines of the prescription drug abuse problem. Rockefeller collected ideas from all different professions on how to best combat the growing painkiller abuse issue from their perspective. He spoke with:
- School administrators
Rockefeller understands that to solve this problem he needs to know how it operates in the real world. He did not want to just put ideas into the law that seemed effective from a distance. Instead, he wanted feedback from those in the trenches on what would be most effective from their point of view. Rockefeller said he accomplished this by “asking for new ideas on how to reduce prescription drug abuse. This legislation reflects that real, on-the-ground feedback from West Virginia. And it addresses a complex problem in an equally intricate way.”
New Guidelines Proposed by West Virginia Congressmen for Safe Painkiller Use
Through the following proposed methods in the Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act, the men hope to drastically reduce the number of prescription drug overdoses in West Virginia and throughout the US:
- Public education campaigns on safe use of prescription painkillers
- Additional training required for physicians before they will be allowed by law to prescribe the highly addictive drugs
- Develop safety standards for safe dosage and use of prescription pain drugs
- More federal support for prescription drug monitoring programs in each state
- Detailed reporting on the causes of prescription drug overdoses to help inform future decisions about the safe use of these medications
What do you think of the proposed ideas to help decrease prescription drug overdoses? Share your opinion below.