May 8 (UPI) — Walmart has announced it will limit prescription painkillers to no more than a seven-day supply, as part of a national effort to curb abuse.
The new seven-day cap on opioids will be implemented at all U.S. Walmart and Sam’s Club stores in the next 60 days, the company said.
The new cap is the equivalent of 50 morphine milligrams per day, which Walmart said is is in line with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines.
President Donald Trump has declared opioid abuse a national health emergency.
Walmart said it’s also taking other steps to stem the opioid crisis — including pharmacist counseling and curriculum programs to educate young people on abuse risk.
“The company believes education on prescription drug abuse is a key part of the solution,” Walmart said.
At the start of 2020, Walmart will require e-prescriptions for all controlled substances, as the retailer said electronic scripts are “less prone to errors” and “electronically trackable.”
Earlier this year, the company also offered free opioid disposal solution, DisposeRx, at all its U.S. pharmacies.
The drug take back to ensure proper disposal of medications is part of a growing trend nationwide.
The Drug Enforcement Administration said this week it saw a record number of unused pills turned over to authorities last month during the semiannual National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.
The DEA destroyed nearly 1 million pounds of “potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs, making it the most successful event in DEA history,” officials said in a statement.
“Today we are facing the worst drug crisis in American history, with one American dying of a drug overdose every nine minutes,” U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said. “I want to thank DEA and especially every American who participated in this event. I have no doubt it will help keep drugs out of the wrong hands and stop the spread of addiction.”