Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacies have announced plans to provide no more than a 1-week supply of acute opioid medications to most customers in an effort to help curb a nationwide epidemic that now kills more than 100 people per day.
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one suffered an overdose from a prescription opioid drug, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit and our lawyers can help.
What’s the problem?
Walmart said on Monday that within the next 60 days, both it and Sam’s Club will begin imposing the time limit on initial opioid prescriptions for acute pain, along with a mandate that the medications top out at 50 morphine milligrams per day.
In states where supplies are required to last less than a week, Walmart and Sam’s Club pharmacies will comply.
“We are taking action in the fight against the nation’s opioid epidemic,” said Marybeth Hays, executive vice president of Health & Wellness and Consumables for Walmart U.S. “We are proud to implement these policies and initiatives as we work to create solutions that address this critical issue facing the patients and communities we serve.”
The abuse of prescription opioid pain relievers is currently a serious global problem, according to the U.S. National Institutes of health (NIH). The institutes estimate that between 26 million and 36 million people abuse opioids worldwide, with an estimated 2.1 million people in the U.S. suffering from substance use disorders related to prescription opioid pain relievers in 2012, and an estimated 467,000 addicted to heroin.
National pharmacy retailers have increasingly been proactive in addressing the wave of opioid addiction, providing services ranging from counseling to sites and methods that allow for the safe disposal of medications.
And while Walgreens provide kiosks where people can dispose of unused prescription drugs, Walmart now provides packets that enable patients to safely discard unused opioid medicines at home.
Walmart also said on Monday that beginning Jan. 1, 2020, it would require e-prescriptions for all controlled substances, noting that electronic prescriptions tend to be harder to forge than their paper counterparts.
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Free Confidential Evaluation: Again,iIf you or a loved one suffered an overdose from a prescription opioid drug, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit and we can help.