New Drug Database Law Has Critics, Supporters

Officials say a new law that requires Tennessee's doctors to use a drug-monitoring database and pharmacists to upload prescription information more often will allow state officials to determine which doctors are prescribing the most painkillers. Bill Gibbons, commissioner of the state Department of Safety and Homeland Security, who helped craft the bill, says he hopes the changes will make doctors more aware of the number of prescriptions they write and allow them to spot patients who are "doctor-shopping" to buy pain medication for an addiction or to resell. But some critics, including doctors, say the law puts a burden on all doctors rather than targeting the few who are careless or over-prescribe. Other critics say the law doesn't go far enough. The Times-Free Press has more