Regulations of the Department of Public Health at 105 CMR 700.003 permit the issuance of a Massachusetts Controlled Substances Registration (MSCR) to licensed health facilities as defined in 105 CMR 700.001. A health facility includes the following:
  • A hospital, hospital pharmacy, long-term care facility or clinic licensed or maintained by the Department;
  • A public medical institution as defined in M.G.L. c. 118E § 8;
  • Any institution licensed or maintained by the Department of Mental Health;
  • Any hospital, long-term care facility or clinic maintained by the Commonwealth; or
  • Any ambulance service licensed by the Department to provide Advanced Life Support services.

M.G.L. c. 111 § 52 exempts certain entities, such as clinics established solely to provide service to students or employees of corporations or institutions, from requirements to obtain clinic licensure from the Department's Division of Health Care Quality. However, the Drug Control Program cannot issue an MCSR to a clinic unless it is licensed as such.

Clinics exempt under M.G.L. c. 111 § 52, that are not licensed by the Department, but require controlled substances (including samples) must obtain controlled substances through an authorized individual practitioner (e.g. physician, nurse practitioner, physician assistant ). These authorized individual practitioners must be appropriately registered by the Department, and, where applicable, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration at the address of the clinic. Practitioners may only obtain controlled substances through a manufacturer or distributor and are responsible for recordkeeping and security of drugs maintained on the premises.

Health facilities with an MCSR are advised that such registrations are not transferable. A new MCSR is required for a change in name, ownership or address. An MCSR is valid for one year and must be kept current.

For further information, please contact the Drug Control Program (617) 983-6700.


This information is provided by the Drug Control Program within the Department of Public Health.