Prescription Drug Database Hot Topic for Political Opponents

By Jonathan Cooper |

Published 07/22 2014 09:24PM

Updated 07/23 2014 10:28AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Missouri is one of a kind, and for some politicians, that's not a good thing.

"It's embarrassing. It's embarrassing to the state of Missouri," said Dr. Bob Stuber, a Democrat running for State Senator in the 34th district.

Missouri is the only state in the country that does not have a prescription drug database. A database would allow medical professionals across the state to access controlled substances prescribed to patients.

It's something supporters like Stuber say would help fight the states' growing prescription drug epidemic.

"I'm a practicing doctor, I see these patients all the time," Stuber said. "And I know that it would help all practicing physicians, all dentists, all pharmacists, and the police department."

Stubers opponent, current State Senator Rob Schaaf, has been outspoken about privacy concerns.

"Most people don't want the government to have their medicines, to know what medicines they take," said Rob Schaaf, a Republican. "And they certainly don't want 26,000 Americans to have access to that data."

Schaaf has proposed compromised bills over the last two years that would limit who could access the data.

"The database has been hacked in four different states," Schaaf said. "These are horrible stories that occur. What do you think that if you have your medicine on a database you don't think people will show up at your house to steal it? Of course that's going to happen."

Schaaf says going forward he will continue to fight against a database and will look for alternatives to stop prescription drug abuse.

"I will continue to try to find a compromise that works that doesn't put people's private data at such risk," Schaaf said.

A risk that Stuber and other supporters say is minimal.

"In fact, this is a no brainer," said Stuber. "It's a no brainer because 49 other states have done it, for heavens sake."

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