Opioid Regulation: Time to Reconsider the Nomenclature and Approach

12 Pages Posted: 15 Oct 2014

See all articles by Danuta Mendelson

Danuta Mendelson

Deakin University, Geelong, Australia - Deakin Law School

Date Written: October 14, 2014

Abstract

In Australia, deaths due to the ingestion of opioid analgesics, though numerically small, have been increasing at a rapid rate. The reasons for this increase are multifactorial; the conceptually outdated legislation that controls prescription and administration of opioid analgesics might be one of them. The stated purposes of the governing statutory instruments include prevention of the improper use of drugs of dependence and protection of the public. However, in order to achieve these aims, the relevant legislation should utilise theories and definitions that are consistent with the medical understanding of the relevant physiology and behaviour, so as to provide a common linguistic and conceptual platform for regulatory and clinical decision-makers. Although Victoria, with its intricate statutory framework for Schedule 8 poisons, is used as an example of an obsolescent approach to the concept of drug-dependency, conclusions reached are applicable to other jurisdictions, other scheduled drugs, and all health care practitioners who have the statutory authority to possess and prescribe them.

Suggested Citation

Mendelson, Danuta, Opioid Regulation: Time to Reconsider the Nomenclature and Approach (October 14, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2509832 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2509832

Danuta Mendelson (Contact Author)

Deakin University, Geelong, Australia - Deakin Law School ( email )

221 Burwood Highway
Burwood
Burwood, Victoria 3125, Victoria 3125
Australia

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