Police: Opana still drug of choice for addicts in Austin, Indiana

LOUISVILLE Ky. (WDRB) -- A new law that limits how much pain medicine doctors can prescribe in Kentucky is now in effect. 

The new law that took effect Thursday is designed to help fight the opioid epidemic that's sweeping the nation. Under the new law, prescription painkillers will be limited to a 3-day supply in an effort to prevent abuse. 

The idea behind HB 333 is to prevent extra opioid pain pills from entering the illegal drug market. The bill underwent intense debate by Kentucky lawmakers before it was passed earlier this year. 

The bill's sponsors say the goal is to get drugs like fentanyl and carfentanyl off the streets and out of the hands of drug traffickers. Penalties for anyone caught trafficking the drugs are now elevated to a Class C Felony for a first offense. 

The biggest concern over the new law centers on the 3-day pain pill limit, which prohibits doctors from issuing a prescription for more than the three days for Schedule II narcotics like OxyContin. 

Some patients who truly need the medication say the law makes it too difficult for them to get pain medication for legitimate reasons. 

The law does include exceptions for cancer patients, people diagnosed with chronic pain and patients receiving end-of-life care.

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