§16-5W-2. Legislative findings.
(a) Use of fraudulently obtained prescriptions to illegally obtain prescription drugs is an epidemic. It has few equals for sheer size, speed of growth, resistance to deterrence, harm to people from so many strata of society, and large costs to insurers. Overdoses, deaths and injuries continue growing at an alarming rate. More than twenty million Americans-nearly seven percent of the population-were estimated to abuse prescription drugs in 2007, based on the National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

(b) Prescription drug diversion drains health insurers nationally of up to $72.5 billion a year, including up to $24.9 billion annually for private insurers. Estimated losses include insurance schemes, plus the larger hidden costs of treating patients who develop serious medical problems from abusing the addictive narcotics they obtained through the swindles.

(c) Federal law now requires tamper resistant prescriptions for all Medicaid prescriptions, and various states have taken on the task of implementing document security programs as part of their efforts to reduce substantially prescription drug fraud.

(d) The State of New York documented Medicaid savings of $140 million directly tied to its secure issuance prescription program during the first year after implementation. It is estimated that the savings resulting from the reduction in prescription drug fraud will more than pay for the cost of implementing an official secure state prescription program in West Virginia within a reasonable period of time following initial implementation.