HealthDay News — The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has announced critical changes in its registration renewal process, according to a report published by the American Academy of Family Physicians.
Beginning January 1, 2017, the agency will send a single renewal notice to each registrant stating that their registration is due to expire; the notice will be mailed 65 days in advance of the scheduled expiration date. There will not be any additional reminders. In addition, the ability to renew registration online will no longer by available after the expiration date. If a registrant fails to complete the renewal process by the expiration date, the registrant will have to apply for a new DEA registration and the original registration will not be reinstated. Paper renewal applications will not be accepted if received after the expiration date, and will be returned to the registrant.
These changes will potentially increase the administrative burden on physicians, as they will need to submit a new application and wait for it to be reviewed before receiving their new registration number. If a physician misses the renewal cut-off, their prescriptions will not be honored and patients will not be able to receive their medications.
In a letter to the DEA, James Madara, MD, from the American Medical Association has appealed to the DEA to consider the unintended consequences of this change and maintain the policy of allowing an unofficial grace period for registration renewal.