Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Al McAffrey Takes a Stand for the Mentally Ill.

Last week, Representative Al McAffrey proposed House Bill 1991, which provides for unused prescription medication (not deemed dangerous) to be "transferred from residential care homes, nursing homes, assisted living centers, and public intermediate care facilities for people with mental retardation" in hospitals and correctional facilities. The transfer of these prescription medications will help those Oklahomans who need, but cannot afford the prescriptions otherwise.

Aside from helping people on an individual level, the state will also save money, as preventing problems is always more cost-efficient than fixing issues that have already come to light. By transferring these medications to the disadvantaged, it is possible to prevent crime, and alleviate the silent suffering of many citizens.

While there are understandable reservations about the transfer of prescribed substances, it is important to realize that participation in this program is voluntary, and that the Board of Pharmacy is allocated the right to define the rules and regulations for such a program in the state of Oklahoma. Given these strict control policies, the negative possibilities are curtailed, and help is able to be distributed to individuals across the state.

This bill has passed in the House, and has moved onto the Senate for approval.

To read the full text of this bill, click here.

-Nicole Morgan

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