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Health & Science

Texas Law Limiting Opioid Prescriptions Takes Effect September 1

The law limits opioid prescriptions for acute pain to 10 days, with no refills allowed.


Opioid medication.


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A new state law designed to limit opioid abuse will take effect September 1. The law is aimed specifically at those most vulnerable to developing an opioid addiction.

Under the law, prescriptions for acute pain – such as immediately after surgery or injury – can't exceed 10 days and can't include any refills.

"Part of what they tried to do was limit the supply out there so that prescriptions for large amounts of medicine for what really should be temporary use is limited, and we were in favor of that change," says Dr. Bernard Gerber, president of the Harris County Medical Society.

The law does not cover opioid treatments for chronic pain, cancer care or substance abuse.

Under a separate law, set to take effect next March, physicians will have to check a state database to monitor whether patients have already been prescribed opioids elsewhere.

Andrew Schneider

Andrew Schneider

Politics and Government Reporter

Andrew Schneider is the senior reporter for politics and government at Houston Public Media, NPR's affiliate station in Houston, Texas. In this capacity, he heads the station's coverage of national, state, and local elections. He also reports on major policy issues before the Texas Legislature and county and city governments...

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