More physicians sign up for prescription program
TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- Officials say 85 percent of New Jersey's physicians can now access to the state's Prescription Monitoring Program.
The PMP collects detailed information on prescriptions filled in New Jersey for controlled dangerous substances, including potentially addictive opiate painkillers. It also includes data on more than 40 million prescriptions written since September 2011.
The program helps prescribers learn whether their names have been fraudulently misused in forged prescriptions, or if patients have engaged in "doctor shopping," visiting multiple physicians to obtain more drugs than one doctor would prescribe.
"Some abusers of drugs go from New Jersey to New York to Connecticut -- multiple doctors, multiple pharmacies -- to try to get as many of these drugs as possible," said Steve Lee, acting director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs.
Officials say 25,501 of the state's eligible physicians can now access the PMP. That represents a 467 percent increase since December 2013.
The state currently shares information with Connecticut and Delaware. Lee said a partnership with New York should be in place sometime next year.
The increase comes after changes were made to the program's enrollment process, after physicians and others said the process was too cumbersome.
Dino Flammia contributed to this report.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)