The FDA’s new Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy for Opioids requires the makers of opioids to provide education and guidance to health care providers.
A report in Pain Medicine News dot com states the enrollment in this type of education by health care providers is optional.
Speaking at the Institute for Safe Medication Practices webinar, Dr. Lewis Nelson had this to say about the new opioid Risk Evaluation Mitigation Strategy:
“Prescriber and patient education alone will likely prove insufficient to assuage the concerns of patients with chronic non-cancer pain, who fear the reduced availability of opioid pain relievers, and public health advocates, who fear the excessive use of these drugs.”
Dr. Lewis went onto say that he believes the REMS approach could be an important component for addressing the opioid epidemic in the United States.
Arizona Pain Specialists Dr. Paul Lynch had this to say about the FDA’s new approach to educating physicians about treating non-cancer patients with opioids.
"We have a long discussion of risks and benefits with every patient thats going to be on short acting or long acting opioids at our practice. We make sure to use the word death several times in that discussion. I think its kinda glossed over sometimes that these drugs truly do have a risk of death. When there are sixteen thousand deaths per year out of eight million americans taking pain pills. I think it's something that we are required to discuss with every patient and thats what we do at our practice and what we will continue to do. I will be excited to see what new education comes out in the spring."
Dr. Lynch also said Arizona Pain Specialists seeks to educate others with their 12 point opioid protocol. You can find more information about that protocol on their website, ArizonaPain.com
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