Three more bills

Last week, three more bills I cosponsored passed the House.

Two of those bills are to help combat the growing opioid addiction problem.

H. 3824 establishes requirements for health care practitioners to review a patient’s controlled substance prescription history before issuing a prescription for a Schedule II drug, which includes opioids.

H. 3821 requires mandatory higher education curriculum on prescribing controlled substances in the training of health care professionals. The coursework must include instruction on strategies to recognize and reduce the likelihood of patient addiction to opioids and other controlled substances.

The State reports that deaths from opioid and heroin abuse “almost rival those on car crashes in South Carolina: In 2015, 637 people died in vehicle crashes in South Carolina. The same year, 550 died of heroin and opioid abuse.”

We’ve got to get a handle on this epidemic as soon as possible. I’m committed to doing what I can as a legislator to stop these senseless deaths.

The third bill that passed, H.3793, makes provisions for a doctor of philosophy degree in Education Administration at Coastal Carolina University and a doctor of philosophy degree in Computer and Information Science at the College of Charleston, among other degree programs for other colleges and universities.

These bills met the April 10th crossover deadline. Any legislation that clears either the House or Senate after April 10th requires a two-thirds majority vote to even be debated by the other body this year.

Wednesday was University of South Carolina legislative day, where the academic and athletic accomplishments of the school were celebrated. This was a particularly timely event with the USC women’s basketball team just having won the national championship and the men’s basketball team making it to the national final four tournament teams.

The House is taking this week off. When we return to session on April 18th, there will be just 12 legislative days left before adjournment, unless additional days are added through a special session.

Thanks so much for the privilege of serving in the House. Please let me know if I can be of assistance.

Rep. Lee Hewitt