Ohio drug courts get access to offender prescription information - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Ohio drug courts get access to offender prescription information

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COLUMBUS, Ohio -

Ohio drug courts, like those in Mahoning and Trumbull counties, have another tool to make sure that recovering addicts comply with treatment ordered by judges.

The State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy announced on Tuesday that drug court programs have access to the state’s prescription drug monitoring program, known as the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System.

OARRS is a statewide database that collects information on all prescriptions for controlled substances that are dispensed by pharmacies or furnished by prescribers in Ohio.

The access provides judges and court personnel with information about a participant’s use of controlled substance medications.

“The use of OARRS by Ohio drug courts gives judges and staff additional monitoring capability that contributes to their effectiveness in helping participants change their behavior,” said State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy Executive Director Steven W. Schierholt.

Data from the state’s prescription drug monitoring program serves as a resource for prescribers, pharmacists, and law enforcement.

Access to OARRS is granted to drug courts and other specialized cases treating individuals for substance use disorders such as those relating to mental health, veterans and human trafficking.

Drug courts were created in Ohio after judges found that they were seeing the same drug-involved offenders and decided that traditional court processes were not working.

In addition to carrying out legal proceedings against offenders who use drugs, drug courts also specialize in the treatment of those offenders.

Through drug courts, judges, court personnel, and treatment providers partner to help end the cycle of crime and drug use of offenders.

Those who are eligible for drug courts have been charged with low-level, nonviolent offenses.

Drug court participants agree to comply with strict supervision and treatment requirements.

Most offenders seen in drug courts have many issues in addition to drug abuse, such as employment, education or mental health problems.

The typical length of time for offenders to complete drug court is eighteen months.

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