Drug Abuse And Substance Abuse

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Drug abuse is a chronic public health problem, affecting all levels of society, with potential irreversible consequences. Drug abuse may affect a person's relationships, employment status, educational opportunities, status in society, and general health and wellness. The initial decision to abuse a drug is often voluntary. However, as the substance's active chemicals disrupt central nervous system processes over time, the individual's self-control is challenged and he or she becomes unable to resist the urge to use the drug. This is the start of drug addiction (National Institute of Drug Abuse [NIDA], 2012). However, drug abuse and addiction may be preventable.
Systematic reviews on the effectiveness of drug abuse prevention programs delivered
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320). These programs are run by state regulatory, administrative or law enforcement agencies separate from DEA. In the past, multiple copy or triplicate paper prescriptions were used to monitor dispensing of controlled substances in several states. One copy stayed with the provider, another copy went to the pharmacy, and the last copy was reported to the state. For providers to access patient records of controlled drug history, they would have to place a request and the results were mailed to their offices. The paper-based system was deemed "cumbersome, expensive, and time-consuming" (Worley, 2012, p. 320). Electronic PMPs now have replaced the paper-based system. States with active PMPs require pharmacists to enter information on all prescriptions of controlled substances along with the patient's name and date of birth into the electronic database. Health care providers register to access the database, and data can be retrieved on the patient's prescription and purchase of controlled substances for up to 1 year (Worley, 2012). In 2011, DEA reported 37 active PMPs across the United States; an additional 11 states had enacted legislation to implement their own PMP programs. The recent implementation of electronic PMPs has generated a great deal of interest in determining program effectiveness. Very little research has been published about PMPs, but preliminary reports on their effectiveness for prescription opioids seem promising. The five studies reviewed by Worley (2012) found PMPs were associated with fewer opioid shipments, abuse admission treatments, and total prescriptions written. PMPs have implications for advanced practice nurses with prescriptive authority for controlled substances. Worley concluded use of PMPs can help health care Recognizing Signs of Prescription Drug Abuse and Addiction, Part I CNE providers detect doctor shopping

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