Glavine must answer for missed prescription monitoring deadline

August 24, 2016 at 10:13 am

d’Entremont wants answers why Health Minister broke promise to fix gaps in program

Chris d'Entremont, MLA for Argyle Barrington

ARGYLE, NS – Progressive Conservative Health critic Chris d’Entremont says Health Minister Glavine broke his promise to fix Nova Scotia’s prescription monitoring program.

“The Health Minister has missed another deadline to fill the gaps in a program that prevents the abuse of prescription drugs,” says d’Entremont. “Families are counting on the minister to get it right and he’s failed them and all Nova Scotians again.”

Global recently reported that despite promising fixes in 2014 and June 2016, the government has recently extended its self-imposed deadline to March 2017.

The Auditor General has previously slammed the government for not following through on its promises. A report released in April 2016 noted that the McNeil Liberals had not fixed the gaps that prevent the abuse or misuse of prescription drugs and that the department was ineffective in reviewing prescriber reports.

“This is a serious problem that can destroy lives and devastate families and it is not being treated with the seriousness it deserves,” says d’Entremont. “Back in 2014, Minister Glavine wrote that he wanted Nova Scotia to be ‘a worldwide leader in addressing prescription drug misuse’. He’s keeping this province from being a leader through empty promises and missed deadlines.”

Just this year, a doctor was accused of trafficking 50,000 prescription painkillers for up to 20 months.  She was not flagged by the province’s drug monitoring program.

“I would have hoped the sobering statistics and recent stories of prescription drug misuse would have moved the minister to act, but that hasn’t been the case,” says d’Entremont. “It’s time for the minister stop making promises and finally deliver on much-needed changes to the prescription monitoring program.”