Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2007, $375,427)
Since the beginning of FY 2002, Congress has appropriated funding to the U.S. Department of Justice to support the Harold Rogers Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. Prescription drug monitoring programs enhance the capacity of regulatory and law enforcement agencies to collect and analyze controlled substance prescription data through a centralized database administered by an authorized state agency. These programs are designed to help prevent and detect the diversion and abuse of pharmaceutical controlled substances, particularly at the retail level where no other automated information collection system exists.
States that have implemented prescription drug monitoring programs have the capability of collecting and analyzing prescription data much more efficiently than states without such programs, where the collection of prescription information requires the manual review of pharmacy files which is a very time consuming and invasive process. The increased efficiency of prescription drug monitoring programs allows for the early detection of abuse trends and possible sources of diversion.
Legislation for the Texas Prescription Monitoring Program was enacted in 1982 for the monitoring of Schedule II controlled substances and the Department of Public Safety was designated responsibility for the program. Legislation will be introduced during the 2007 legislative session to expand the program to include Schedules III through V controlled substances. The goals and objectives of the enhanced program are to: 1) increase the overall function and storage capacity and improve the query capabilities of the current monitoring system; 2) increase the amount of data available to authorized healthcare providers; 3) streamline the data verification process used for permanent entry into the system; 4) perform investigations and audits to verify prescription data and identify violations of statutes; and, 5) increase the number of inquiries and investigations initiated from the evaluation and analysis of data collected on Schedules III through V controlled substances. The monitoring program for Schedule II prescriptions has resulted in reducing criminal activity related to these prescriptions and the expansion to include monitoring of Schedules III through V controlled substances is expected to increase the program's efficiency and effectiveness related to investigations, information provided to healthcare officials, and the overall prevention of drug diversion.