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July 22, 1992

Regulation of Benzodiazepine Prescription

Author Affiliations

Center for Medical Consumers New York, NY

JAMA. 1992;268(4):473. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03490040048019

To the Editor.  —In his Editorial,1 Dr Glass discusses "two festering issues" of US health care policy: physician autonomy and the use of outcome measures to assess quality. His comments refer to a study published in the same issue by Weintraub et al.2There is nothing in the New York State experience that demonstrates the regulation of benzodiazepines to be "found wanting." The New York triplicate prescription regulation does not prevent or impede a physician from prescribing a benzodiazepine when he or she believes it is medically appropriate. Other than the required use of the state's official triplicate form, there is no difference in the physician or patient experience when the drug being prescribed is regulated by the program and when it is not.If anything is "found wanting" it is the political campaign waged by the state medical society against the regulation, which included an unfortunate court