The state of Georgia became the second-to-last state to implement a prescription monitoring program (PMP), which allows pharmacists and physicians to submit and check patient controlled substance prescription medication history in order to help them make the most appropriate treatment decisions. The Augusta Chronicle reports that nearly 2,000 pharmacists and prescribers have already signed up for the program since it was started in May.
PMPs are important tools in the fight against prescription drug abuse. Thanks to these programs, health care providers are able to watch for signs of prescription drug abuse such as a patient visiting multiple doctors in order to get access to more prescription drugs. Georgia officials hope to cut down on the rates of prescription drug abuse and on overdose deaths, which have dramatically increased in the state since 1999.