Florida’s House Bill (HB) 21 introduces changes to Florida’s opioid law that affect the way physicians dispense opioids. Therefore, it is essential for physicians to familiarize themselves with these new procedures.

Starting from July 1st, 2018, opioid providers must consult Florida’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) before giving controlled substances to patients. They must also report any opioids dispensed in the PDMP by the next business day. This is in response to Florida’s severe opioid epidemic and the efforts made to stop it.

The following are the new dispensing requirements: Controlled substance prescribers must first verify a patient’s identity and consult the PDMP to view their controlled substance administering history before giving them any controlled substances. Specifically, the dispenser, prescriber, or designee of a prescriber or dispenser must check the system for their patient’s controlled substance dispensing history before prescribing or dispensing any controlled substance to those aged 16 and older. Non-compliance will result in a non-disciplinary citation for the first offense and disciplinary action under F.S. section 456.073 for each subsequent offense.

HB 21 removes prior exemptions from reporting under the statute, such as specific exceptions for healthcare practitioners when administering controlled substances directly to patients if the amount is adequate to treat the patient during their treatment session and a pharmacist or dispensing practitioner when dispensing a one-time, 72-hour emergency resupply of a controlled substance to a patient.

The dispenser must now record opioids dispensed in the PDMP, including situations previously exempt under said statute. In Florida, the dispenser must report the following information in the PDMP about any controlled substance prescribed to the patient no later than the close of the next business day, unless the department approves an extension/exemption.

The report must include the name of the prescribing practitioner, the practitioner’s federal Drug Enforcement Administration registration number, the practitioner’s National Provider Identification, and all other appropriate identifiers, including the date of prescription.

The date the prescription is filled and the payment method used, such as cash, insurance coverage, or Medicaid payments. However, the department is not authorized to store/include individual credit card numbers or other account information.

The name, address, phone number, and birthday of the person receiving the prescription.

The name, national drug code, quantity, and strength of opioids dispensed.

The entire name, federal Drug Enforcement Administration registration number, State of Florida Department of Health issued pharmacy permit number, and the address where the controlled substance came from. If dispensed by anyone other than a pharmacist, the practitioner’s full name and address, their federal Drug Enforcement Administration registration number, and State of Florida Department of Health issued license number and National Provider Identification.

Whether the drug is an initial prescription or a refill and the number of refills ordered.

The name of the person picking up the prescription and the type and issuer of the ID provided.

Any other significant identifying information as determined by department rule.

Any dispensing or prescribing provider who fails to record the dispensing of controlled substances under this new controlled substance law is committing a misdemeanor. HB21 amends other parts of Florida law to increase regulations around prescribing and dispensing of controlled substances, which are not mentioned here. Therefore, it is vital for those with special permission to prescribe controlled substances to educate themselves.

Text Us
Skip to content