June 21, 2018
COLUMBUS-State Representatives Tim Ginter (R-Salem) and Robert Sprague (R-Findlay) today announced that the Ohio House has passed House Bill 231, legislation they joint sponsored that would enact a pilot program in pharmacies for tamper-resistant containers.
House Bill 231 would require the State Board of Pharmacy—contingent upon an appropriation from the General Assembly—to administer a two-year pilot program that would dispense schedule II controlled substances in lockable or tamper-evident containers. Schedule II drugs include narcotics like oxycodone, hydrocodone, fentanyl, and more. The goal of the legislation is to cut down on misuse of prescription drugs by reducing the accessibility of the medications and the threat of theft.
“Pilfering is a common means for people, especially young people, to access prescription medications that are not prescribed to them,” said Ginter. “This bill will promote the dispensing of controlled substances in containers that have a locking mechanism and/or tamper-evident features through a two-year, optional pilot program. In addition, the bill creates a point of contact between patients and pharmacists to discuss the potential for abuse and diversion of controlled substances.”
The bill would also require the State Board of Pharmacy to reimburse pharmacies for the cost of participating in the program, which includes expenses related to the special packaging for eligible prescriptions.
“Seventy percent of people addicted to prescription drugs get those drugs from friends and family,” said Sprague. “This pioneers new, lockable pill vials that will help reduce the stealing of pills from friends and family. If we are ground zero for the heroin epidemic, then we should try new ideas to make Ohio ground zero for solutions to the heroin epidemic.”
House Bill 231 now awaits consideration by the Senate.