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Congresswoman Clarke’s Statement on the Safer Prescribing of Controlled Substances Act

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on the Safer Prescribing of Controlled Substances Act, a bill she introduced which requires medical professionals who prescribe controlled substances to complete a training program that will reduce the abuse of prescription drugs.

The training program will include best practices for pain management, including alternatives to prescribing controlled substances;  instructions on responsible prescribing of pain medications; and methods for diagnosing, treating, and managing a substance use disorder.

“The abuse of prescription drugs has become a threat in every community in the United States. There are nearly 259 million prescriptions for painkillers such as hydrocodone and oxycodone written in the United States each year. Many of the individuals who become addicted to painkillers ultimately switch to cheaper alternatives, particularly heroin, at a terrible cost. According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control, there were 22,134 deaths from overdoses of prescription drugs in the United States in 2013, and another 8,257 deaths from overdoses of heroin. We cannot allow the overmedication of Americans to continue to ruin lives and families afflicted by drug addiction. With the Safer Prescribing of Controlled Substances Act, we will reverse the trend of overmedication that has resulted in such senseless tragedy.”

Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, a member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade, the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, the Committee on Ethics and the Committee of Small Business in the House of Representatives, proudly represents Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, Park Slope, Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.

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