A first-of-its-kind effort to empower doctors and pharmacists by giving each the right to refuse opioid-based medication to treat pain was led by West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey.
In February he called upon lawmakers to adopt an anti-retaliation provision to eliminate negative consequences inflicted upon those who refuse to prescribe or dispense opioid pain medications.
The Governor signed the proposal and became law as part of Senate Bill 273.
“The rules have changed, and West Virginia is leading the way,” Attorney General Morrisey said. “Every prescriber and dispenser must know they now have a right to trust their conscience and refuse opioid pain medications in favor of a less addictive option.”
Senate Bill 273 makes it unlawful for any entity or person to punish or threaten a health care provider who refuses to prescribe, administer, or dispense opioid painkillers.
It also That includes any retaliation by reducing the provider’s compensation and/or privileges.
On June 7th the bill will take effect.