By Editorial Board-New York Times. State governments are at the front lines of the country’s epidemic of drug overdose deaths. That’s why it is important that the National Governors Association says it will come up with protocols for dispensing prescription painkillers that are among the biggest sources of addiction and abuse in the country.

The protocols, or guidelines, would restrict how and under what circumstances doctors could prescribe a category of pain drugs known as opioids. They might, for example, impose limits on how many pills doctors could prescribe to patients who have had minor surgery or dental procedures.

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