System to help monitor drug use

The abuse of prescription drugs across the country has increased significantly, according to the South Australian Government.

To help combat this misuse the Government will roll out a real-time prescription monitoring system across the state which will provide doctors and pharmacists instant notifications when they are prescribing or dispensing drugs.

Minister for Health Stephen Wade said $7.5 million would be invested in the new system, which would be integrated with the Commonwealth National Data Exchange.

"Many prescription overdoses are linked to 'prescription shopping' between multiple doctors and pharmacies, and (this) will cover all medicines listed in Schedule 8, such as fentanyl and oxycodone," he said.

Tenders to provide the monitoring system close on November 22.