Indiana Senate Enrolled Act 226, which limits the amount of an opioid prescription a prescriber may issue under certain circumstances, became effective July 1, 2017. According to the law, opioid prescriptions written by dentists and other prescribers are limited as follows:
- If the prescription is for an adult who is being prescribed an opioid for the first time by the prescriber, the initial prescription may not exceed a seven (7) day supply.
- If the prescription is for a child who is less than eighteen (18) years of age, the prescription may not exceed a seven (7) day supply.
The legislation does allow for an increased prescription if, in the prescriber’s professional judgment, the patient’s condition requires a longer supply.
On Wednesday, July 12, The SB 226 Workgroup met to review proposed rules for the new law. The Indiana Medical Licensing Board has developed a rule draft to implement the new regulations. Dr. Jay Asdell is the IDA representative on the workgroup. According to Ed Popcheff, IDA Director of Governmental Affairs, the initial draft included a variety of disease specific exemptions but most will be removed in the next version of the draft. “Public input dictated that he rule reflect the original intent of the law that allows dentists to use their professional judgment and training,” Popcheff said. The workgroup will continue to meet through the summer.
Opioid Resources Available for Dentists
In March, 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released guidelines on prescribing opioids for pain management. In addition to these guidelines, the CDC offers resources such as clinical tools, patient videos, online training, and more. IDA members are encouraged to check out the resource center at the CDC website.
The American Dental Association continues to advocate for safe and effective prescribing of opioids. The ADA’s website offers practice tools, continuing education, and additional resources to position dentists to keep opioids from becoming a source of harm.