Colo. doctors cracking down on painkiller abuse

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DENVER (AP) -- Some Denver-area emergency doctors are restricting the types and amounts of addictive painkillers they administer, citing a nationwide increase in overdose deaths.

The Denver Post reported Saturday ( that Denver Health' emergency room will stop filling long-term prescriptions for such painkillers as Percocet, OxyContin and Vicodin.

University of Colorado Health is writing policies that would end the practice of filling prescriptions that patients claim were lost or stolen.

Dr. Chris Colwell, director of emergency medicine at Denver Health, says physicians disagree on how tough guidelines should be but the hospital's doctors do agree that patients should be sent back to their long-term doctors for pain management.

A federal report released this month said Colorado has the second-highest rate of prescription-pill abuse in the nation, at 6 percent of the population.

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