Colby Hamilton, Writer, WNYC News
Colby Hamilton is a general assignment reporter. He originally joined WNYC as a political blogger. He's a proud graduate of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is lining up support for his proposed legislation he says will help combat a crisis of prescription drug abuse here in New York.
The AG is on Long Island to further unveil details about his Internet System for Tracking Overprescribing (I-STOP) legislation, which would establish an online database that would help track prescription drugs in real time.
A recent report by Schneiderman's office found that painkiller prescriptions increased by six million between 2007 and 2010.
"Long Island is at the center of the state’s prescription drug epidemic, and it’s time to take action before another tragedy strikes," Schneiderman said in a statement about today's press conference. “Inaction is not an option. The time is now to streamline communication between health care providers and pharmacists to better serve patients, stop prescription drug trafficking, and provide treatment to those who need help.”
Schneiderman was joined by Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice, whom he narrowly beat in the Democratic primary back in 2010.
“The Attorney General’s I-STOP plan will help law enforcement and the medical community combat prescription drug abuse to prevent tragedies from happening in the future on Long Island and across the state. There is no good reason to deny doctors and pharmacists the ability to make controlled substance dispensing decisions on an immediate and real-time basis," Rice said in the statement.
The bills has been introduced into both the Assembly and State Senate.