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July 22, 1992

Regulation of Benzodiazepine Prescription

Author Affiliations

Public Citizen Health Research Group Washington, DC
Institute for Health Policy Studies University of California, San Francisco

JAMA. 1992;268(4):472. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03490040048017

To the Editor.  —In an Editorial1 accompanying the study2 on the New York State triplicate prescription program for benzodiazepines, Dr Glass uses the study's results to buttress the American Medical Association's (AMA) bias against such programs. Although the AMA's Board of Trustees opposes multiple prescription programs because of their "documented ineffectiveness in reducing prescription drug abuse and their adverse effect on the availability of prescription medications for therapeutic use," neither of these statements is supportable.According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, "Within the first few years of instituting the multiple copy prescription programs, states have experienced reductions of up to 55% in the number of Schedule II prescriptions filled... due to the program's preventive effect on indiscriminate and over-prescribing, and prescription forgery, and its deterrent effect on illegal sales of drugs and various diversion methods."3Within the first 4 months of New York's triplicate program for benzodiazepines,