Death sparks call for GP access to script records

Victorian coroner Ian Gray said GPs should have access to a real-time prescription monitoring (RTPM) system to stop ongoing damage and deaths from pharmaceutical misuse and inappropriate prescribing.

He also said an effective monitoring system would operate across state borders and should go beyond Schedule 8 drugs.
Judge Gray made the recommendations after conducting an inquest into the death of Anne Christine Brain, who was last seen alive sleeping on a couch at her home in Melbourne’s west on 24 December 2011.

Ms Brain died of intoxication from the combined effects of tramadol, methadone, diazepam, codeine, alprazolam, risperidone, doxepin and metoclopramide, the coroner found.

A search of her Medicare PBS records indicated she had been repeatedly prescribed the same analgesic, anti-anxiety and antidepressant medications by seven different GPs in 2011.

A police search of her home found no illicit drugs.

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