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House Judiciary Passes Two Bills to Overhaul Drug Enforcement

The Kentucky House Judiciary Committee has overwhelmingly passed two bills to overhaul the state's fight against drugs.

One bill deals with synthetic drugs. It would ban the manufacture of any drug that simulates an illegal substance or that contains certain chemical compounds.

The second bill is an overhaul of the KASPER system, which monitors prescription drugs. The bill puts KASPER under the Attorney General's office and requires the board of medical licensure to crack down on reports that prescriptions are being over prescribed.

Heather Wright runs a pain management clinic in Lexington. She agrees with the bill, but has one complaint.

"We feel that if there is a report that is to be made it is going against the practitioner, the practitioner has a right to know that that has happened. And in the current way the bill is written the prescriber of the practitioner is not given that notification in the very beginning," she says.

Another part of the bill would require pain clinics to be owned by a doctor. That clause is not an issue for Wright.

"We do not have a problem with the ownership but we also feel like operation from people like myself, who is not a physician, should be in conjunction with the operation and the ownership from a physician," she says.

Both bills soared through the House Judiciary Committee, with neither registering a single 'no' vote.

Kenny Colston is the Frankfort Bureau Chief for Kentucky Public Radio (a collaborative effort of public radio stations in Kentucky). Colston has covered Kentucky's Capitol and state government since 2010. He is a Louisville native, and a graduate of the University of Kentucky. When he's not tracking down stories about Kentucky politics, you can often find him watching college sports, particularly football.
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