Sheriffs In North Carolina Wants Access to State Computer Records to Identify Anyone with Scripts for Controlled Substances and
Posted Sep 10 2010 1:01am
This is kind of scary unless there were a criminal reason to ask for a warrant in a specific case for investigation purposes, but to just key in and start looking around at will could be a bit dangerous and of course there’s privacy.
One thing with life is that upon seeing a piece of information about someone else, we kind of tend to form some type of opinion or vision of another person or place and this could definitely lead to something like that with unnecessary assumptions, and law enforcement, strictly just by doing the job they do get veered off in those directions. It can and does happen to all of us but I think we would see a lot of unnecessary judgments of individuals coming out of something like this. BD
Sheriffs in North Carolina want access to state computer records identifying anyone with prescriptions for powerful painkillers and other controlled substances.
The state sheriff's association pushed the idea Tuesday, saying the move would help them make drug arrests and curb a growing problem of prescription drug abuse. But patient advocates say opening up people's medicine cabinets to law enforcement would deal a devastating blow to privacy rights.
Allowing sheriffs' offices and other law enforcement officials to use the state's computerized list would vastly widen the circle of people with access to information on prescriptions written for millions of people. As it stands now, doctors and pharmacists are the main users.
Others say opening up patients' medicine cabinets to law enforcement is a terrible idea.
"I am very concerned about the potential privacy issues for people with pain," said Candy Pitcher of Cary, who volunteers for the nonprofit American Pain Foundation. "I don't feel that I should have to sign away my privacy rights just because I take an opioid under doctor's care." Pitcher is receiving treatment for a broken back.