New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced this week new efforts to combat the opioid epidemic, including advancing partnerships in New York’s prescription monitoring program (PMP) across the country.
In an ongoing effort by the Department of Health to engage New York's PMP with other states, it is now interoperable with 25 states and Washington, D.C., meaning that New York's program securely shares data with and receives data from the other states' PMPs regarding patients' prescriptions. The connection to half the states in the country now provides practitioners access to nearly 150 million patients' controlled substance history records.
With this program, providers in New York will now have the ability to select participating states while searching the PMP in order to see a fuller picture of their patients' controlled substance histories. This feature is especially helpful in the Tri-State Area and other stretches across state and other stretches across state borders, according to the Governor’s office.
“With a more visible controlled substance history, providers can more easily detect and prevent ‘doctor shopping’, a critical tool in combatting the opioid epidemic,” according to Gov. Cuomo’s statement.
“Tragically, opioid addiction continues to take the lives of New Yorkers every single day, but this administration will not rest until the opioid epidemic is a thing of the past,” Governor Cuomo said in a statement. “By removing unnecessary roadblocks to proper care and providing more resources and training with these additional measures, New York will continue to lead the nation in implementing innovative and effective solutions to save lives, prevent overdoses, and provide the treatment those suffering from addition so desperately need.”
Since Governor Cuomo's I-STOP legislation began requiring practitioners to check the PMP before prescribing controlled substances, New York has reduced its number of "doctor shopping" incidents by over 98 percent, the Governor’s release stated.
The Department of Health has systematically advanced New York's PMP interoperability, first with bordering states, and ultimately expanding to the rest of the Northeast, the Eastern Seaboard and beyond. The Department annually reviews all of its agreements with other states and re-interviews their officials to ensure the continuity of applicable statutes and rules of access, data sharing and security.
Other efforts that Gov. Cuomo announced include training investigators with the New York State Department of Health's Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement to carry and administer naloxone and allowing hospitals to provide detoxification services without a separate certification from the New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.