Enjoy your Tuesday NCMS Morning Rounds 

March 2, 2021

ALERT: CSRS Mandate Coming Soon

The requirement to check the NC Controlled Substances Reporting System (NC CSRS) before prescribing certain controlled substances will take effect soon, although a specific date has not yet been set. This mandate is a provision in the STOP Act (Strengthen Opioid Misuse Prevention Act), which was signed into law in June 2017 to help stem the opioid abuse crisis.

In the latest issue of its Forum newsletter, the NC Medical Board states that its staff has been notified by the NC Department of Health and Human Services’ (NCDHHS) Drug Control Unit, which runs NC CSRS, that all system upgrades and requirements that, by law, must be completed before the requirement can be in effect have been finished.

Although there is still no specific effective date for mandatory NC CSRS use, it’s clear that it won’t be long now. Register here, if you haven’t yet.

You can review the specific requirements of the law at this link to the statute, §90-113.74C (a). The NCMB also provides the following summary.

Prior to prescribing a Schedule II and Schedule III opioid or narcotic, practitioners are required to review a patient’s 12-month prescription history in the NC CSRS. For every subsequent three-month period that the Schedule II or Schedule III opioid or narcotic remains part of the patient’s medical care, practitioners are required to review the patient’s 12-month history in the NC CSRS.

Reviews should be documented within the patient’s medical record along with any electrical or technological failure that prevents such review. Practitioners are required to review the history and document the review once the electrical or technological failure has resolved.

Certain practitioners may, but are not required to, review the NC CSRS prior to prescribing a targeted controlled substance to a patient in any of the following circumstances:

• Controlled substances administered in a health care setting, hospital, nursing home, outpatient dialysis facility or residential care facility.

• Controlled substances prescribed for the treatment of cancer or another condition associated with cancer.

• Controlled substances prescribed to patients in hospice care or palliative care.

The STOP Act authorizes NC CSRS to conduct periodic audits to determine prescriber compliance with review requirements. The law states that NC CSRS shall report to the Board any licensee found to be in violation of the requirement to check NC CSRS; violations may result in regulatory action by the Board.

Tracking the COVID-19 Trends – Thanks to You

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the NCMS, the NC Medical Group Management Association and Curi have been sending surveys regularly to our members to track the impact the pandemic is having on your practice. Thank you to everyone who consistently responds to this survey! Your participation allows us – and you – to get a snapshot of where medical practices in North Carolina are financially, with PPE supplies, telehealth and staffing among other issues. This valuable data helps inform our advocacy and resource development on your behalf.

Please take just a minute to complete today’s survey. TAKE THE SURVEY.

Review a summary of the data for last year here.

Nominations Now Open for NCMS Awards

Nominations are open for the annual NCMS awards, given to those in the health care community who exemplify the NCMS’ mission of enhancing health for all North Carolinians. The nomination deadline is July 1, so if you or one of your colleagues meets the criteria outlined below, now is the time to begin the application process.

The E. Harvey Estes, MD, Physician Community Service Award honors a North Carolina physician who has an outstanding record of community service, which, apart from his or her specific identification as a physician, reflects well on the medical profession. Learn more and access the application form here.

The John Huske Anderson Award recognizes a layperson whose contributions have had a positive impact on the medical profession and public health in North Carolina. Learn more about this award and access the application form here.

All application materials must be submitted to Evan Simmons at [email protected].

In the News

False Claims Linking COVID-19 Vaccine, Infertility Are Making Women Hesitant To Get Vaccinated, Health Experts Say, Becker’s Hospital Review, 2-24-21

Learning Opportunity

Leadership and Policy: Actions to Address Racism as a Public Health Issue, March 5, 1 – 2:15 p.m.
This session will feature public health leaders discussing the fundamental drivers of health inequities and how public health agencies can advance equity-driven policy actions. Participants should expect to walk away with innovative policy solutions to narrow the gap in health inequalities.

Learn more and register here.

If you have policies you’d like your NCMS Board of Directors to consider, please complete the Board input form here. Thanks for reading!