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Texas Fights Prescription Drug Abuse With E-Data

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DALLAS (AP) – The Texas Department of Public Safety has launched an online program to track prescribed painkillers and other controlled substances in a bid to fight a rising prescription drug problem.

DPS spokeswoman Katherine Cesinger says Prescription Access in Texas is designed to help health care and law enforcement officials identify potential prescription drug abusers and dealers. Authorized users can see what medication a patient has received anywhere in Texas in the past year.

DPS began making the database available online to a limited group in June and is expanding it this month to include more specialists and investigators.

Although some hope it will lead to fewer fatal drug overdoses, the American Civil Liberties Union has concerns about privacy and correcting potential errors in the information.

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