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Letters: Opioid message

August 22, 2016 In the July 11 ADA News message from ADA President Carol Gomez Summerhays ("ADA Focuses on Prescribing Opioids Safely, Effectively"), she wrote, "The good news is that data from South Carolina's prescription drug monitoring program shows that a notable minority of dental patients had incidents of multiple preexisting opioid prescriptions. The bad news is that research on dental prescribing practices is still scant, leaving lawmakers to make far-reaching policy decisions based on anecdotal evidence and haphazard assumptions."

I think that the worse news is that "lawmakers are making far-reaching policy decisions based on anecdotal evidence and haphazard assumptions." Dr. Summerhays also states that between 2003 and 2012 dentists dropped from being the second most frequent prescribers of opiates to being the fifth. It seems to me that these lawmakers should be the focus of the ADA's attention now.

Peter J. Scelfo, D.D.S.
Fredericksburg, Virginia