Heartland doctor and pharmacist react to CVS opioid limits - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Heartland doctor and pharmacist react to CVS opioid limits

(Source: Pixabay) (Source: Pixabay)
HERRIN, IL (KFVS) -

CVS Pharmacy announced yesterday that the company is going to limit the amount of opioid prescriptions people can fill in an attempt to stop the opioid epidemic. The action has caused debate on social media over who should be in charge of the amount of medications patients receive between doctors and pharmacists. 

Murphysboro, IL physician, Dr. Jeff Ripperda, and Herrin, IL pharmacist Ben Calcaterra are two health care professionals that work together to treat patients. Both believe the action from the pharmaceutical giant will help with the crisis. 

"We've learned how to contact physicians when appropriate to change those medicines or to ask those physicians to call insurances and make overrides because those patients truly need longer therapy than just the seven days," says Calcaterra.

However, Dr. Ripperda says this doesn't always happen.

"Sometimes just professional courtesy and manners will keep the pharmacists from calling and saying, 'are you sure you wanna do this? Do you really think this is a good idea?' So I think that CVS giving a limit is a bit of a safeguard against pharmacies having to do that."

If anything, both health care professionals believe the new restrictions will increase communication between doctors and pharmacists. However, both of them have different solutions to the opioid crisis as a whole.

Calcaterra believes there should be more emphasis on treating addiction through treatment centers and special medication.

While Dr. Ripperda believes it is best to keep patients from getting addicted in the first place by treating more pain causing conditions without prescription medicine.

CVS' reaction to the epidemic can be found here.

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