NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) – You'll need to have a photo ID with you the next time you head the pharmacy to pick up a prescription of schedule II and schedule III drugs.
Pharmacies will accept a driver's license, passport, military ID or a state-issued ID card as forms of photo identifications.
Someone else can pick up your prescription for you, but they will have to show their ID.
According to District Attorney Ben David, the new state law will help identify and reduce the number of people who pick up various prescriptions with the intent to sell or abuse them.
North Carolina used to attract drug users from outside the state, because a person could cross the border with dozens of prescriptions in different names and have no trouble getting them filled.
Agent Donnie Varnell said the number of cases his units covered in the past five years increased by 400 percent. Now, law enforcement can put a name to the face.
When you show your photo ID to pick up medication, your identity will be stored for three years in case the SBI needs to check someone's buying history. David said this new law should work with minimal inconvenience to everyone who simply needs their medicines and reduce a growing problem.
"The same stigma that attaches to heroin and marijuana and cocaine hasn't yet hit these drugs, but they have the same deadly consequence," explained David.
Prescription drug abusers could end up on probation, in jail or even dead. New Hanover County's drug treatment court accepts prescription abusers too.
It's a program that has successfully graduated more than 70 percent of its graduates.
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