Opioid addiction is real and so is opioid abuse.

The state of Colorado has just a passed a bill aimed at reducing opioid abuse - which could, in turn, slow the epidemic of painkiller addiction.

This week, Governor Jared Polis signed a bill into law that will make it more difficult for people to obtain painkiller prescriptions fraudulently. The law requires doctors to send prescriptions for opioid drugs to pharmacies electronically rather than the typical paper prescription.

Senate Bill 79 will make sure doctors communicate directly with a pharmacy by phone or by a computer when prescribing opioid painkillers.

The bill received widespread support in the Colorado House and the Senate before being signed into law by the governor this week.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, misuse of opioids affects some 2 million Americans. As recently as 2016, some 20,000 Americans died as a result of an overdose of prescription opioids.

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