- Associated Press - Thursday, December 1, 2016

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - The state of Vermont has finalized rules governing how many opioid painkillers medical professionals can prescribe.

The rules are designed to reduce the number of people who become addicted to powerful painkillers.

The new limits, which will take effect July 1, sets legal limits on the dosage and number of opioid painkillers that may be prescribed. For some minor procedures, the proposal calls for a limit of between nine and 12 pills.

Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin proposed the limits in his 2016 state of the state address. The limits were set by the Health Department and the rules were approved Thursday by a special legislative committee.

Shumlin says that in 2015 enough painkillers were handed out in Vermont to give every man, woman and child a bottle of 100 pills.

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