New Hampshire is now the 49th state to use a database to keep track of commonly abused drugs, with Gov. John Lynch signing a bill on Tuesday establishing a prescription drug monitoring system.
In 2007-2008, New Hampshire was one of the top ten states for rates of drug use in several categories, including past-year non-medical use of pain relievers among young adults age 18-25, and opiates are the most commonly cited drugs among primary drug treatment admissions in the state.
All other states except Missouri have such databases or have authorized them, according to the National Alliance for Model State Drug Laws. But many clinicians are unaware of these programs, and their use varies among states and specialties, notes a recent article published in the New England Journal of Medicine.