I don't think doctors should be monitored either. If a doctor's script writing is monitored then he will be less likely to prescribe certain drugs, in order to remain off the radar. In the end that only hurts the patient. It wouldn't happen anyway because that would put negative pressure on drug sales, and the pharmaceutical industry would step in to make sure it gets stopped. That's why the Sherrifs propose monitoring individual users, instead of examining the entire drug chain from manufacturing to dispensing; it is the patient/user who has the least amount of power to do anything about it so they will suffer the privacy invasion first.
IMO the entire pharmaceutical drug system needs to be re-evaluated from the ground up. Abuse of the narcotics is just a symptom of a bigger problem. There are few genuine cases where someone needs to be on high level pain killers, sleep aids, etc. for the long-term, and there are many, many complementary therapies available to deal with pain. The fact that I can visit my MD today and make up some story about pain or trouble sleeping and get a fairly dangerous narcotic within minutes is rather disturbing. People who come in with those complaints should receive testing and evaluation.
Years ago I was in a car accident and in the year that followed I had severe back pain. My family doctor pushed pain killers immediately, saying it was a soft tissue injury. I had to push him to order x-rays. He did, and nothing came back as being broken, according to him. I later went to another MD for a second opinion -- again, pain killers were pushed. It took three years and some digging before I figured out that maybe something called a chiropractor could help me. Turns out my spine was severely misaligned in one place, and he fixed the problem with a few weeks of manual manipulation.
I am frustrated with MDs. They are increasingly being trained to not actively seek solutions, but to be salespeople for narcotics. Where is the real healing in that?