The Norman Transcript

Editorials

October 29, 2013

Drug reclassification could lessen abuse

NORMAN — In 2011, U.S. doctors wrote more than 131 million prescriptions for hydrocodone. That makes it the most prescribed drug in the country.

It is used for treating everything from toothaches to chronic back pain. It also consistently ranks as the first or second most abused medicine in the U.S.

Food and Drug Administrators are recommending new restrictions on medications containing hydrocodone, used in drugs like Vicodin. The new rules, if approved, would classify drugs with hydrocodone as Schedule II drugs, limiting which kinds of medical professionals can prescribe and limiting refills, according to The Associated Press.

Law enforcement authorities have sought such a classification change for years, arguing that the pills are too easily available. Patients could get as many as five refills before having to see a physician again.

Oklahoma law enforcement agencies say limiting refills and the state’s prescription registry will cut down on pill resales. Forty-four persons were arrested in 2009 in Norman as part of a pill resale ring that catered to drugs like hydrocodone and oxycodone.

The FDA’s decision, if it is reclassified in early December, will be welcome relief for states like Oklahoma that have been plagued by prescription drug abuse.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Editorials
  • State, local jobmarkets look up

    A tight labor market is often a big problem for economic development professionals. They need to be able to promise companies that there are willing workers in the community’s labor pool....

    July 26, 2014

  • Be careful out in the heat

    This week’s triple-digit temperatures are contributing to heat-related illnesses. The state health department’s Injury Prevention Service reminds Oklahomans of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke....

    July 25, 2014

  • Get smart on crime

    It’s no secret that prison guards have become the frontline mental health case workers in Oklahoma prisons. Accessing mental health services outside of prison is tough but even harder behind the walls....

    July 25, 2014

  • Quite the resilient bunch

    The people of Moore are a resilient bunch. They’ve bounced back from tornadoes before, but the current renaissance may be the quickest yet. FEMA officials said it would take two years to see some sense of normalcy. That’s hardly the case....

    July 24, 2014

  • A fresh start for VA

    All of us have high hopes for the confirmation and success of Veterans Affairs Secretary nominee Robert McDonald. If confirmed — and most believe he’s a shoe-in — McDonald will take over a paralyzed system of health care that is not ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Call up National Guard

    We’re not sure it will help, but you have to hand it to Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He deployed up to 1,000 Texas National Guard troops to help secure his state’s border with Mexico this week....

    July 23, 2014

  • It’s only getting worse

    Conditions for children in Oklahoma were starting to look up for a few years, according to the annual Kids Count reports. Now we know it wasn’t getting better. The recession was impacting the rest of the country, dropping their scores....

    July 23, 2014

  • Noting a life well lived

    James Garner never intended to be a movie and television star. He just kind of lucked into it, he would tell those who asked. If you have the itch to act, get a good-paying job and spend your free time at your local community theater, he ...

    July 22, 2014

  • Recount that really matters

    Americans have been hearing a lot about Congressional elections, but there’s another one halfway around the globe that will matter far more....

    July 22, 2014

  • Runoffs get no respect

    The Aug. 26 Republican runoff election for the Cleveland County District 3 commissioner post is one of only 18 races on ballots around the state. Only two races are statewide — the Democrat contests for U.S. Senator nominee and state ...

    July 22, 2014