TECHS IN THE KNOW
Effective October 6, 2014 hydrocodone combination products moved from Schedule III (CIII) to Schedule II (CII).
The rescheduling rule was passed in January of this year, giving entities 45 days to comply with the change. This change affects the way pharmacies order, store, inventory, and dispense hydrocodone combination products.
Hydrocodone, by itself, has (always) been classified as Schedule II. It is the products that contain hydrocodone with another drug, known as combination products, moving from CIII to a more restrictive CII. Hydrocodone combination products are most often indicated for pain control and sometimes as a cough suppressant. Hydrocodone is the most frequently prescribed opiate in the United States. The decision of DEA and FDA to reschedule is based on the widespread illicit use and diversion of these products.