The full Senate gave unanimous approval Tuesday to a bill aimed at stemming Oklahoma’s opioid crisis. Sen. Anthony Sykes, R-Moore, is the principal author of Senate Bill 1446, which addresses the core problem in this epidemic—the over-prescription of opioids.
“Senate Bill 1446 addresses the opioid crisis by limiting the initial prescriptions,” Sykes said. “Furthermore, the prescribing physician and the patient must have a plan for subsequent opioid prescriptions.”
According to the recently released report by the Oklahoma Commission on Opioid Abuse, in 2016, 60 percent of overdose deaths were attributable to prescription drugs, compared to 40 percent of deaths resulting from illegal drugs. The report, issued in January, acknowledged that “the medical community holds a unique position in the opioid epidemic because of its prescribing authority.”
“This legislation will save lives and prevent addiction,” Sykes said. “The opioid situation was the subject of much discussion during the interim. SB 1446 takes action and shows Oklahoma is serious about addressing this opioid crisis.”
SB 1446 now moves to the House of Representatives for further consideration.