FENTANYL PATCH BILL PASSES SECOND READING;
A BILLTO HELP SAVE LIVES
QUEEN’S PARK – Haliburton – Kawartha Lakes – Brock MPP Laurie Scott is very pleased that Bill 33, which would help stem the growing abuse of Fentanyl Patches, a narcotic to help control pain, passed Second Reading unanimously in the Ontario Legislature
The bill entitled, Safeguarding Our Communities Act 2014, would implement a fentanyl patch for patch return policy. It would use a “one in and one out” model where patients are asked to return any fentanyl patches previously dispensed from the pharmacy before they are able to receive a new one.
“This bill will help communities deal with what is becoming a growing concern from both a health, social and criminal standpoint,” said Scott
“It’s my firm belief that any time we can do something in this House that can literally save lives, we should do so,” said Scott, who was joined at the Legislature by former Brock Township Mayor Terry Clayton and Acting Inspector James Stewart-Haass of the Durham Police Service, who helped pioneer the program in the area.
Durham was the fourth community in Ontario to introduce the patch for patch program after 8 people died of overdoses in Beaverton, Georgina and Sutton area, within 18 month. None of the victims had prescriptions for fentanyl patches.
The program’s aim is to reduce the risk of accidental overdoses and deaths. Frequently, the discarded fentanyl patches are being cut up, and then sold on the streets where they are chewed or smoked as a drug. Bill 33 would see this type of program implemented across the province.
Similar programs exist now in Lindsay and Kawartha Lakes due to the hard work of local pharmacist Cathy Puffer, who was named Canadian Pharmacist of the Year by the Canadian Pharmacist Association. Programs have also been introduced in Peterborough and Haliburton is currently working towards one.
“I was happy to see an initiative like the Patch 4 Patch Program come to our communities and I commend the healthcare professionals and law enforcement that saw a problem and found a solution. I would like to see this type of program in every community across the riding and I believe this bill will make that a reality. I hope the government will move this bill quickly through the legislature.” Scott concluded.