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Bill Requires Proper Disposal of End of Life Medications

Oleg Dudko, 123rf stock photo

A bill to require family members to sign a contract agreeing to proper disposal of powerful pain killers upon the death of a loved one is before the Kentucky House. 

The legislation is partially aimed at addressing problems related to the current opioid epidemic.

Amelia McClure is with Hosparus Health, which serves patients in 37 Kentucky and Indiana counties.

“It is a stark reality that the opioids are destroying lives across our state and more measures must be taken to get ahead of the emergency,” said McClure. “House Bill 148 will assure that hospices will continue to handle these prescriptions with responsibility and that when patients pass on, they do not leave behind a potentially dangerous legacy.”

Bill sponsor Addia Wuchner said sometimes these medications are diverted onto the streets for trafficking. Wuchner said a follow-up procedure is outlined in the bill.

“If they refuse to enter into that contract, then upon the death and those drugs are left in the home, local law enforcement, or the public health would then be notified,” said Wuchner.

The legislation pertains to schedule two, three, four, and five controlled substances. That would include drugs like morphine, methadone, certain amphetamines, and over the county prescriptions with codeine.

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