Legislature’s Inaction Puts Drug Effort At Risk

ATLANTA (AP/WAOK) – A new program designed to combat prescription drug abuse in Georgia might run out of money to operate only a few months after it gets under way in June.

Officials say Georgia lawmakers didn’t appropriate any funding for the prescription monitoring program when they passed legislation to create it in 2011. The program involves an electronic database that tracks prescriptions.

A two-year, $400,000 federal grant that pays startup costs for a new prescription monitoring program grant expires Sept. 30.

There were versions of legislation in the House and Senate that would have corrected the problem, but a final version died without a vote before the session ended earlier this year.

Officials say prescription drug abuse causes or contributes to the overdose deaths of 11 Georgians every week.

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