Sen. Marty Knollenberg
Sen. Marty Knollenberg

LANSING, Mich. — The House Committee on Health Policy on Wednesday approved Senate Bill 274, which seeks to reduce the number of opioids in circulation by limiting prescriptions for acute pain to seven days.

Acute pain typically applies to minor injuries that require short-term prescriptions — such as a sprained ankle or having wisdom teeth removed.

“These are necessary reforms that have received bipartisan support from both legislators and the public,” said Sen. Marty Knollenberg, R-Troy. “Too many Michigan families have lost loved ones and these bills really hit home for families across the state. While I support public debate and respect the committee process, it is time to get these bills to the governor’s desk.”

Knollenberg points to unfinished prescriptions as the leading cause of the dramatic rise in abuse and overdose deaths.

“I introduced this legislation because I think when pain begins to fade, people, without thought, place the half-full bottle of pills back into the cabinet without knowing how many pills are in it and it sits there unmonitored,” he said. “Without knowing how many are in there, or carefully monitoring the bottle, someone may never know if some have been taken and sold, or ingested without a medical purpose.”

Also included in the package were updates to Michigan’s reporting requirements for certain controlled substances, guidelines for substance abuse care and efforts to prevent patients from seeking prescriptions from multiple doctors even though the patient has no medical need.

“These bills are good public policy. I’d like to see the House make these bills a priority because the quicker we can get these codified into state law, the more lives we can save,” Knollenberg added.

SB 274 will now go before the full House for a vote.