Georgia Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (GA PDMP)

New GA PDMP Database Management Guidelines and Law Changes - Effective Dates:

As of July 1, 2017, management of the GA PDMP passes from the Georgia Drugs and Narcotics Agency (GDNA) to the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH).

Any and all questions, requests, search warrants, subpoenas, etc. should be directed to DPH on and after July 1, 2017. GDNA will no longer be able to answer any GA PDMP questions after that date.

Effective July 1, 2017:

Dispenser Requirement (retail pharmacies/dispensing prescribers):

Dispensers must report filled controlled substances Rx data to the PDMP at least every 24 hours (this is a change from the previous requirement of reporting once every 7 days)

- Nothing shall require a dispenser to obtain information about a patient from the PDMP,  provided however, that dispensers are encouraged to obtain such information while keeping in mind that the purpose of such data base includes reducing duplicative prescribing and overprescribing of controlled substances.

Prescribers and Dispensers:

- Members of a prescriber’s or dispenser’s staff or health care facility can register to obtain PDMP data for the prescriber or dispenser if they are licensed/registered under various prescriber/dispenser licensing boards, or they are prescriber employees annually registered with the Board of Pharmacy.

- Not more than two individuals who are members per shift or rotation of the prescriber's or dispenser's staff or employed at the health care facility in which the prescriber is practicing

- In any hospital which provides emergency services, each prescriber may designate two individuals, per shift or rotation, who are employed or contracted by such hospital so long as the medical director of such hospital has authorized the particular individuals for such access.

- PDMP data must be maintained in a secure and confidential manner as required by this code section    

- The prescriber or dispenser will be held civilly and criminally responsible for misuse of data by their employees;

- PDMP data can be included in a patient’s electronic health or medical records (dispenser and prescriber)

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Effective January 1, 2018:

Prescriber Requirement:

- Each GA prescriber with a DEA shall register to use the PDMP no later than January 1, 2018 and is encouraged to register as soon as possible after July 1, 2017

- Beginning January 1, 2018, every new DEA prescriber registrants must register with the PDMP within 30 days of obtaining a DEA permit

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Between January 1, 2018 and May 31, 2018:

- Between 1-1-2018 and 5-31-2018 DPH will randomly test the PDMP to ensure it    is accessible 99.5% of the time

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Effective July 1, 2018:

- On or after July 1, 2018, any person initially prescribing a schedule II opioid or any benzodiazepine shall seek and review a patient’s PDMP information, then at least once every 90 days thereafter, unless the:

            -           Rx is for no more than a 3 day supply of each drug and no more                         than 26 ‘pills’

            -           Patient is an inpatient in a hospital, LTCF, hospice, personal care home                               etc. to be administered and used by the patient on the premises

            -           Patient had out-patient surgery, and the Rx is for no more than a 10                                  day supply or 40 ‘pills’

            -           Patient is terminally ill and in an outpatient hospice

            -           Patient is being treated for cancer

- Prescribers who violate the requirement to check the PDMP will be held administratively liable to their licensing board     

- Prescribers making sure inquires shall notate same in the patient’s medical record

- A prescriber issuing opioid prescriptions shall provide information to patients on the risks of using opioid and information on proper disposal of opioid

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The contact information for DPH is:

Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) PDMP website: dph.georgia.gov/pdmp

Questions about the PDMP or registering, please send an email to pdmpsupport@dph.ga.gov or call 404-463-1517

Mailing Address:

Georgia Prescription Drug Monitoring Program

Georgia Department of Public Health

2 Peachtree St. NW, 15th Floor

Atlanta, GA 30303

 

For Law Enforcement and Regulatory purposes regarding ALL search warrants and subpoenas, please use the following DPH guidelines:

The email contact regarding search warrants and subpoenas is: law.pdmp@dph.ga.gov 

Per direction from DPH:

Because DPH is subject to HIPAA and other state and federal privacy laws, the requests will have to be reviewed by our Privacy Officer before the information can be pulled and given to law enforcement.  A subpoena or search warrant should be sent as an email attachment to LawPDMP@dph.ga.gov , which is an email address we have set up especially for law enforcement.  In the body of the requesting email, the officer should specify the return email address and the name of the person who will receive it.   The DPH Privacy Officer, Meredith Grant, will review and approve the request and forward it to the Office of Vital Records.  The Vital Records staff will pull the data and send to the requesting officer by encrypted email, with a second email containing the password.  We believe that law enforcement will receive the same quick response that it has received in the past. 

Subpoenas and search warrants may be delivered in person to the Office of Vital Records, 1680 Phoenix Boulevard, Atlanta GA 30303, marked “Attention: DPH Privacy Officer, Meredith Grant.”  However, there may be a delay in responding while the Vital Records staff contacts the DPH Privacy Officer to obtain review and approval.  For those reasons, we strongly recommend serving subpoenas and search warrants by email rather than serving them personally in paper form.

Please be assured we are committed to full and timely support to law enforcement in this and all matters.

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Georgia DPH GA PDMP Search Warrant – Subpoena Checklists

(For any and all questions, please email DPH at law.pdmp@dph.ga.gov)

Valid Search Warrant Checklist

State time and date of issuance;
State name of the judicial officer issuing the search warrant;

If it is a federal search warrant, it will be issued by a judge or United States magistrate judge.

Georgia search warrants do not have to contain the seal of the court or clerk;
State the place or person to be searched;
Describe the instruments, articles, or things to be seized;
Executed by any peace officer in Georgia, a specifically named officer, or a federal officer permitted to execute search warrants; and
In Georgia, it must be executed within 10 days from the time of issuance or it is void.

Valid Subpoena Checklist

Issued by one of the following agencies or state regulatory boards:

Georgia Composite Medical Board
Georgia Board of Pharmacy

Georgia Drugs and Narcotics Agency may be conducting the investigation and inspection on behalf of the Board of Pharmacy

Georgia Board of Nursing
Georgia Board of Dentistry
Georgia Department of Community Health
Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

Issued by the division director or his/her appointed representative;

Georgia Composite Medical Board subpoenas may be issued by the executive director, chairperson of the board, of vice chairperson (if the chairperson is not available).
Georgia Dentistry Board subpoenas may be issued by the executive director, the president of the board, or the appointed representative of either.

State the person to whom it is directed;
Describe the records to be disclosed; and
Specify a specific event or time by which the records must be disclosed.

 

NOTE: if it is a federal grand jury subpoena, its existence should be kept confidential.