What is OARRS?

To address the growing misuse and diversion of prescription drugs, the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy created Ohio’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP), known as the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS). Established in 2006, OARRS collects information on all outpatient prescriptions for controlled substances and one non-controlled substance (gabapentin) dispensed by Ohio-licensed pharmacies and personally furnished by Ohio prescribers. This data is reported every 24 hours and is maintained in a secure database. Drug wholesalers are also required to submit information monthly on all controlled substances and gabapentin sold to an Ohio licensed pharmacy or prescriber.

OARRS is a tool that can be used to address prescription drug diversion and abuse. It serves multiple functions, including: patient care tool; drug epidemic early warning system; and drug diversion and insurance fraud investigative tool. As the only statewide electronic database that stores all controlled substance dispensing and personal furnishing information, OARRS helps prescribers and pharmacists avoid potentially life-threatening drug interactions as well as identify individuals fraudulently obtaining controlled substances from multiple health care providers, a practice commonly referred to as “doctor shopping.” It can also be used by professional licensing boards to identify or investigate clinicians with patterns of inappropriate prescribing and dispensing, and to assist law enforcement in cases of controlled substance diversion.

Starting in November 2017, Ohio drug court programs have access to OARRS to provide judges and court personnel with critical information regarding a participant’s use of controlled substance medications.