The Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System (CURES) was certified for statewide use by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on April 2, 2018. Therefore, the mandate to consult CURES prior to prescribing, ordering, administering, or furnishing a Schedule II–IV controlled substance becomes effective on October 2, 2018. Here is everything you need to know to prepare for October.
Who is required to consult CURES?
Any health care practitioner authorized to prescribe, order, administer, or furnish a controlled substance, including:
- Allopathic or Osteopathic Surgeon
- Certified Nurse Midwife (Furnishing)
- Naturopathic Doctor
- Nurse Practitioner (Furnishing)
- Physician Assistant
What are the consequences for failing to consult CURES?
A health care practitioner who fails to consult the CURES database must be referred to their state professional licensing board for administrative sanctions, as deemed appropriate by that board.
What if it is not reasonably possible for a prescriber to access the information in CURES in a timely manner?
- If another individual with access to CURES is not reasonably available, a five-day supply of the controlled substance can be prescribed, ordered, administered, or furnished as long as there is no refill allowed. In addition, the prescriber must document in the patient's medical records the reason for not consulting CURES.
What if I determine that consulting CURES would result in a patient’s inability to obtain a prescription in a timely manner and thereby adversely impact the patient’s medical condition?
- A prescriber may provide a non-refillable five-day supply if they make this determination. The prescriber must document in the patient's medical records the reason for not consulting CURES.
What if I experience technical difficulties with CURES?
- There are exemptions to consulting CURES if there are technical difficulties accessing CURES, such as CURES is temporarily unavailable for system maintenance, or you experience temporary technological or electrical failure and CURES cannot be accessed (e.g., power outage due to inclement weather).
- A prescriber should contact the CURES Help Desk at (916) 210-3187 or CURES@doj.ca.gov for assistance accessing their CURES account.