Mandatory checks in CURES take effect Oct. 2

The Department of Justice on April 2 announced that California’s Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System, also known as CURES 2.0, is ready for statewide use and that mandatory CURES consultation becomes effective Oct. 2, 2018. Beginning on this date, prescribers must check a patient’s prescription history in CURES 2.0 before prescribing a Schedule II-IV substance, with some exceptions. For dental care, one of these exceptions is:

. . . if a health care practitioner prescribes, orders, administers, furnishes, or dispenses a controlled substance to a patient as part of the patient's treatment for a surgical procedure, if the quantity of the controlled substance does not exceed a nonrefillable five-day supply of the controlled substance to be used in accordance with the directions for use . . .

The department “has adequate staff, user support, and education” to handle issues that arise with CURES use, the DOJ notice stated. Prescribers with CURES-related questions can email the DOJ or call 916.210.3187.

CDA will keep members informed about the effective date of this mandate along with current legislation that could further impact opioid prescribing requirements in California.

Related Items

On the legislative front, in California alone, more than two dozen bills that address opioid prescription and misuse are working their way through the Legislature, including several by Assemblymember Jim Wood, DDS. Meanwhile, CDA continues to provide education and resources on opioid prescribing to members and dentists throughout California. In May at CDA Presents The Art and Science of Dentistry in Anaheim, CDA Public Affairs will host “Clinical and Legal Considerations for Prescribing Controlled Substances.”

“All health care practitioners authorized to prescribe or dispense Schedule II-IV controlled substances were required to register to use CURES 2.0 no later than July 1, 2016,” the Dental Board of California reminds dentists in an email distributed late January. California’s Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System aids prescribers and dispensers in identifying fraudulent activity and is intended to reduce prescription drug abuse and diversion.