Alert: Mandatory Use of CURES 2.0 Begins October 2, 2018

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In 2016, California updated their prescription drug monitoring  program, the Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System (CURES), to CURES 2.0. Pursuant to Section 11165.4(e) of the Health and Safety Code, this upgraded database was certified for statewide use by the Department of Justice on April 2, 2018. Effective for dates of service on or after October 2, 2018, it is mandatory to consult the CURES 2.0 database prior to prescribing, ordering, administering, or furnishing a Schedule II – IV controlled substance.

Mandatory consultation applies to any health care provider with both (1) a Drug Enforcement Administration Controlled Substance Registration Certificate and (2) a California licensure as any one of the following:

  • Dentist
  • Physician
  • Naturopathic Doctor
  • Optometrist
  • Osteopathic Doctor
  • Physician Assistant
  • Podiatrist
  • Registered Certified Nurse Midwife (Furnishing)
  • Registered Nurse Practitioner (Furnishing)

These health care providers are required to consult the CURES 2.0 database to review a patient’s controlled substance history before prescribing a Schedule II – IV controlled substance to the patient for the first time and at least once every four months thereafter if the substance remains part of the treatment of the patient.

Of note, the mandatory consultation requirement does not apply to either veterinarians or pharmacists. However, each pharmacist filling a prescription has a corresponding responsibility to ensure the prescription is legal and not for purposes of abuse. For more information, including exemptions to the mandatory consultation requirement, providers may visit the CURES 2.0 website.

Posted on September 28th, 2018 and last modified on September 9th, 2022.