Get prescription drugs? Your name could now be in a state database

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- Trips to the pharmacy to get your medications could now mean your name is going on a statewide registry.

The Wisconsin Prescription Drug Monitoring Program went into effect this week.

It requires pharmacies to enter into a database who is getting controlled substances.

This is supposed to help crack down on those abusing prescription drugs.

The new law says all of Wisconsin’s 12,000 pharmacies have to comply.

And Value Center Health Mart Pharmacy in Eau Claire says it is ready.

“All we'll be doing this weekly, sending in data to the PDMP so they can collect dispensing data for controlled substances,” said Tim Levine, a pharmacist and manager at the drug store.

That includes drugs like morphine, OxyContin, Vicodin and fentanyl.

“It shouldn't be a lot of work. The computers should be able to handle it pretty much on its own, we'll just have to punch in the dates, send the data,” Levine said.

He said this will help them track people who jump around doctor’s offices, looking for legal drugs to get high.

“It's just too easy for people to go from pharmacy to pharmacy. And this collects all data if it's insurance or a cash claim,” Levine said.

Prescription meds are the second-most abused drug in the United States.

“It's more than simply drug abuse. It involves other kinds of crimes that stem off of it, burglary, thefts, assaults and so on.

Prescription drugs are connected very heavily to heroin, which is one of the most dangerous drugs we see out there,” said Eau Claire Police Officer Kyle Roder.

Officer Roder said previously, investigators would often have to use subpoena and search warrants to get this information.

“So if there is an easier more readily searchable database that's available to us, that's something that will benefit our investigations,” Officer Roder said.

Pharmacies in Wisconsin have until the end of the month to start sending the data.

44 states have active prescription drug monitoring programs.

The law does not include drugs prescribed at veterinarian offices.

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