Opioids – changes ahead for how they’re prescribed


There’s been growing debate about opioid use and prescription in the United States and the CDC is expected to release prescription guidelines soon.  Below you’ll find some additional information and a link that will allow you to participate in the public comment period which closes January, 13.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has opened public comment until, Wednesday, January 13, 2016, for their proposed guidelines to be used by health providers when prescribing opioid painkillers.

According to statistics provided by the CDC, there has been a 300% increase in opioid prescriptions since 1999, but there has been no overall change in the amount of pain Americans report.

Missouri Hospital Association spokesperson, Dave Dillon, says a shocking 137% increase was reported in the use of opioid painkillers during emergency treatment in Missouri alone.

The CDC states that by improving the way opioids are prescribed through clinical practice guidelines, patients will receive safer, more efficient treatment of chronic pain, while reducing the abuse and misuse of these powerful drugs.

The proposed CDC guidelines are expected to meet scientific standards, use expert consultation, allow for appropriate input, and facilitate partnership development.

The CDC is pursuing the proposed guidelines because, America has witnessed an “opioid overdose epidemic,” over the years from 2000 to 2014; with a 14% increase in the year 2014 alone.

The CDC also believes that to get control over the overdose epidemic, clinical practice changes will be necessary. A spokesperson from the CDC said “[these guidelines] will help primary care providers offer safer, more effective care for patients with chronic pain and will help reduce misuse, abuse and overdose from these drugs.”   The CDC also notes there is growing support for these changes from the public.

Written comments can be submitted to 4770 Buford Highway Atlanta, GA 30341. The comment must be identified by the docket number CDC-2015-0112. You can use this link to leave a public comment electronically.

About Craig Thompson

I am a young professional with two great sons, and I work in the healthcare setting. I am employed in hospital administration and serve as Chief Executive Officer at Golden Valley Memorial Healthcare in Clinton, Missouri. At GVMH we care for our families, friends and neighbors. We're committed to providing the safest, friendliest and most compassionate care to all we serve.
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