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Mass. requiring IDs for more prescriptions in 2011

December 31, 2010

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BOSTON—Patients will have to start showing identification before picking up a wider range of prescription drugs in Massachusetts in 2011.

Under new regulations that take effect Jan. 1, patients will have to show pharmacists their IDs to obtain so-called "Schedule 3, 4, and 5" drugs, including Valium, Vicodin and Ativan.

Health officials say the drugs are serious medication which continue to be implicated in prescription drug abuse, overdoses and overdose deaths.

Patients already have to show their IDs for drugs like OxyContin.

The new information will be entered into the state's Prescription Drug Monitoring database to ensure the prescriptions are being used appropriately.

Officials say the new regulations were crafted to ensure patient privacy.