S.B. 316

By: Uresti

Public Health

Committee Report (Unamended)






According to recent reports, prescription drug abuse is the nation's fastest-growing drug problem. Interested parties note that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has classified the misuse of powerful prescription narcotics as an epidemic, with fatalities due to overdosing on opioid pain relievers recently surpassing deaths from heroin and cocaine.


Studies show that addicts tend to crush or otherwise break down timed-release products into a form that can be snorted or injected for a more intense effect. The parties assert that formulations that make it more difficult to crush or otherwise manipulate such products would help mitigate the potential for abuse. S.B. 316 seeks to address this troubling issue by amending current law relating to continuing education for pharmacists regarding drug abuse and opioid drugs and by requiring an interim study regarding opioid abuse.




It is the committee's opinion that rulemaking authority is expressly granted to the Texas State Board of Pharmacy in SECTION 1 of this bill.




S.B. 316 amends the Occupations Code to require the Texas State Board of Pharmacy to develop a continuing education program regarding opioid drug abuse and the delivery, dispensing, and provision of tamper-resistant opioid drugs after considering input from interested persons. The bill authorizes the board by rule to require a holder of a license to practice pharmacy to satisfy a number of the required continuing education hours for such a license holder through attendance of a program developed under the bill's provisions.


S.B. 316, in a temporary provision set to expire September 1, 2015, requires the standing committee of the senate that has primary jurisdiction over health and human services to conduct an interim study regarding opioid abuse and the provision of tamper-resistant opioids that includes an examination of matters relating to prescription opioid abuse and the use and effectiveness of tamper-resistant opioids. The bill authorizes the committee to establish appropriate criteria for the study to accomplish the study's purpose. The bill requires the committee, not later than December 1, 2014, to submit a report of its findings and recommendations to the lieutenant governor and the speaker of the house of representatives for consideration by the 84th Legislature and requires the committee to include in its report the results of the study and the committee's recommendations for specific statutory changes, if any.




On passage, or, if the bill does not receive the necessary vote, September 1, 2013.