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Sen. Portman Proposes Three-Day Cap On Opioid Prescriptions

Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio)
John Minchillo
Associated Press

Ohio's Republican Senator Rob Portman is backing a plan to cap opioid prescriptions and make it easier for people to access treatment.

Portman's proposal updates the 2016 "Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act," and caps initial opioid prescriptions for acute pain. Portman says a three-day supply is often enough.

“We specifically took chronic pain out and cancer out, because we had heard a lot of concerns about that," Portman says. "But for acute pain, in many cases, there are far better alternatives, and I think most would acknowledge that—including a lot of dentists and doctors I know.”

The three-day limit stems from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.

Portman’s measure also removes a 100-patient limit for physicians treating addiction with certain medications, and allows nurse practitioners or physician assistants to prescribe treatment under a doctor’s supervision.

The plan also appropriates $1 billion for education, training and treatment initiatives.

Nick Evans was a reporter at WOSU's 89.7 NPR News. He spent four years in Tallahassee, Florida covering state government before joining the team at WOSU.