Courts & Crime

Georgia passes law tracking prescription pain drugs

Lawmakers in Georgia have approved a system to track prescription drugs dispensed there, which could help put a dent in interstate pill trafficking that has fed drug abuse and overdose deaths in Kentucky.

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal signed the state's new prescription-monitoring program into law on Friday.

That was a good step, said Boyd County Sheriff Terry Keelin.

Florida has been the leading source of pills flowing into Kentucky from outside the state, but Georgia has been a growing source of concern, Keelin said.

"It will help, absolutely," he said of a monitoring program in Georgia. "Now, how much, only time will tell."

With Georgia's law signed, there are now 35 states with monitoring systems in operation and 13 that have approved such programs but haven't put them in place, according to The Alliance of States With Prescription Monitoring Programs.

Missouri, New Hampshire and the District of Columbia have not approved systems.

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