Frequently Asked Questions

CURES logo
  1. What information may be obtained from CURES?
    • The Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System (CURES) stores Schedule II, III, IV, and V controlled substance prescription information reported as dispensed in California. A CURES Patient Activity Report contains , as applicable, the following information: patient first name, patient last name, patient date of birth, patient gender, patient address, animal name, number of prescriptions, prescriber name, prescriber DEA number, prescriber address, pharmacy name, pharmacy license number, pharmacy address, date prescription was filled, prescription number, drug name, drug form, quantity, drug strength, refill number, number of authorized refills, number of days supply, payment method, and prescription form serial number.

  2. Who has access to CURES information?
    • As outlined in Health & Safety Code section 11165.1(a)(1)(A), health care practitioners authorized to prescribe, order, administer, furnish, or dispense Schedule II, III, or IV controlled substances, and pharmacists, may access the electronic history of controlled substances dispensed to an individual under the practitioner or pharmacist’s care.

      Additionally, pursuant to Health & Safety Code section 11165(c)(2)(a), data obtained from CURES shall only be provided to appropriate state, local, and federal public agencies for disciplinary, civil, or criminal purposes and to other agencies or entities, as determined by the department, for the purpose of educating practitioners and others in lieu of disciplinary, civil, or criminal actions. Data may be provided to public or private entities, as approved by the California Department of Justice (CA DOJ), for educational, peer review, statistical, or research purposes, if patient information, including information that may identify the patient, is not compromised.

  3. How can I submit a research request?
    • In accordance with California Health & Safety Code section 11165(c)(2)(A) CA DOJ may provide CURES data to public or private entities, as approved by CA DOJ, for educational, peer review, statistical, or research purposes, provided that the patient information, including any information that may identify the patient, is not compromised.

      To request CURES data for any of the above listed purposes, or for additional information about the data request process, you can go to the Research Center “Data Request Process” website at https://oag.ca.gov/research-center/request-process.

  4. Who is required to register for CURES?
    • Effective July 1, 2016, health care practitioners authorized to prescribe, order, administer, furnish, or dispense Schedule II, Schedule III, Schedule IV, Schedule V controlled substances and who obtain a Federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration certificate are required to register for CURES. Registration requirements are not based on dispensing, prescribing, or administering activities; instead, the requirements are based on possession of a DEA registration certificate AND valid California licensure as any one of the following:

      Dentist
      Physician
      Naturopathic Doctor
      Optometrist
      Osteopathic Doctor
      Physician Assistant
      Podiatrist
      Registered Certified Nurse Midwife (Furnishing)
      Registered Nurse Practitioner (Furnishing)
      Veterinarian

      Effective July 1, 2016, pharmacists are required to register for CURES upon receipt of their license. Registration requirements are not based on dispensing, prescribing, or administering activities but, rather, on valid California licensure as a pharmacist.

  5. What is the registration process for access to CURES?
    • Registration, for California-licensed health care practitioners and pharmacists, is fully automated. Applicants must complete the online registration form and provide a valid email address, medical or pharmacist license number, and DEA registration certificate number (when applicable).

  6. What Internet browsers are required for CURES access?
    • CURES users must use Microsoft Internet Explorer version 11.0 or higher, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, or Safari. Earlier versions of Internet Explorer are not supported by CURES for security purposes.

  7. What do I do if the information in CURES is not correct?
    • Data contained in CURES is reported to CA DOJ by pharmacies, clinics and other dispensers. If you are a patient or prescriber with incorrect information on your CURES report, please notify the reporting pharmacy of the error. The reporting dispenser creates and owns the prescription records submitted. The Department of Justice is a custodian (and not editor) of these aggregated prescription records.

      For information on how to submit controlled substance prescription data or data corrections, pharmacies and direct dispensers may contact Atlantic Associates, Inc. by email at CACures@aainh.com or by phone at (800) 539-3370.

  8. How can I, as a patient, get a copy of my CURES prescription history report from the DOJ?
    • An individual can obtain his or her CURES prescription history report through the Information Practices Act (IPA). Controlled substance prescription dispensation records contain, as applicable, the following information for each dispensation reported: patient first name, patient last name, patient date of birth, patient gender, patient address, animal name, number of prescriptions, prescriber name, prescriber DEA number, prescriber address, pharmacy name, pharmacy license number, pharmacy address, date prescription was filled, prescription number, drug name, drug form, quantity, drug strength, refill number, number of authorized refills, number of days supply, payment method, and prescription form serial number.

      For more information or to obtain a CURES IPA Request Form, contact the CURES Help Desk at cures@doj.ca.gov.

  9. If a current CURES user is locked out of the system, how can he/she regain access?
    • CURES users are provided easy and prompt online assistance for password resets. Links to these services are on the CURES login page. Additionally, users may contact the CURES Help Desk at (916) 210-3187 or cures@doj.ca.gov.

  10. What are Patient Alerts?
    • CURES provides alerts to health care practitioners when the health care practitioner’s patient's aggregate prescription level exceeds certain thresholds. Patient Alerts are presented at the following therapy thresholds:

      1. Patient is currently prescribed more than 90 morphine milligram equivalents per day
      2. Patient has obtained prescriptions from 6 or more prescribers or 6 or more pharmacies during last 6 months
      3. Patient is currently prescribed more than 40 morphine milligram equivalents of methadone daily
      4. Patient is currently prescribed opioids more than 90 consecutive days
      5. Patient is currently prescribed both benzodiazepines and opioids

      The CURES database also provides health care practitioners and pharmacists with a messaging capability that allows a message to be sent to another health care practitioner regarding a mutual patient from within the secure CURES environment.

  11. Are prescribers required to consult CURES?
    • Effective October 2, 2018, with specified exceptions, health care practitioners authorized to prescribe, order, administer, or furnish a controlled substance shall consult the CURES database to review a patient's controlled substance history no earlier than 24 hours, or the previous business day, before prescribing a Schedule II, Schedule III, or Schedule IV controlled substance to the patient for the first time and at least once every 6 months thereafter if the substance remains part of the treatment of the patient. (Health and Safety Code section 11165.4(a)(1)(A)(i))

  12. To whom does the mandatory CURES consultation requirement apply?
    • The mandatory consultation requirement applies to any health care practitioner with both (1) a Drug Enforcement Administration Controlled Substance Registration Certificate and (2) a California licensure as any one of the following:

      Dentist
      Physician
      Naturopathic Doctor
      Optometrist
      Osteopathic Doctor
      Physician Assistant
      Podiatrist
      Registered Nurse Midwife (Furnishing)
      Registered Nurse Practitioner (Furnishing)

      However, the mandatory consultation requirement does not apply to the following health care practitioners:

      Veterinarians
      Pharmacists

  13. Under what circumstances are health care practitioners required to consult CURES?
    • Pursuant to Health and Safety Code section 11165.4(a), the mandatory consultation requirement requires health care practitioners to consult the CURES database to review a patient's controlled substance history under both of the following circumstances:

      1. Before prescribing a Schedule II, Schedule III, or Schedule IV controlled substance to the patient for the first time; and
      2. At least once every six months thereafter if the substance remains part of the treatment of the patient.

      "First time" means the initial occurrence in which a health care practitioner, in his or her role as a health care practitioner, intends to prescribe, order, administer, or furnish a Schedule II, III, or IV controlled substance to a patient and has not previously prescribed a controlled substance to the patient.

  14. What exemptions apply to the mandatory consultation requirement?
    • There are several exemptions to the mandatory use requirement outlined in Health and Safety Code section 11165.4(b) and (c). For a full list of exemptions, please refer to the California Medical Board's website.

      For assistance determining if an exemption is applicable to you, please contact your respective state licensing board.