Senator Joe Manchin held a conference call this morning to discuss the announcement that the Food and Drug Administration is recommending hydrocodone be reclassified.
The FDA is recommending to the Department of Health and Human Services that hydrocodone drugs like Vicodin or Lortab be reclassified from a Schedule III to a Schedule II controlled substance.
Under this category, it’s acknowledged that the drug has a high potential for abuse, can cause severe psychological or physical dependence, and should be used with severe restrictions.
Manchin believes the rescheduling may curtail the frequent prescribing of the drug, making it less available to those who would abuse it.
“Hopefully it’s going to help, it’s not going to cure our prescription problem that we have, but it will sure help and everyone that’s on the front line fighting prescription drug abuse has come forward and shown that something was much needed and it’s going to be a tremendous help to reducing the amount of pills that are on the street,” Manchin said.
According to Manchin the Department of Health and Human Services is expected to pass along the recommendation to the Drug and Enforcement Administration which will immediately begin the reclassification process. Manchin has been fighting to reschedule the painkillers for nearly two years.