Over 70 health care experts from Oregon are petitioning the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to make Naloxone nasal spray available without a prescription. Naloxone is a fast acting drug that can prevent the death of people who are experiencing an opioid drug overdose.
Among the study’s top findings was the revelation that pain-related disability identifies a substantial portion of the chronic pain population experiencing progressive deterioration in mental and physical health outcomes along with substantially higher health care usage. Together, the High Impact Chronic Pain (HICP) population constitutes some 4.8 percent of the U.S. adult population. About 83 percent of people with HICP were unable to work for a living, and one-third had difficulty with self-care activities such as washing themselves and getting dressed.
This study investigated the association of filled perioperative opioid prescriptions with persistent use of prescription opioid medications following wisdom tooth extraction and found that opioid-naive patients are at risk for persistent opioid use after elective surgery.
GAO recommends that Medicare Expand Oversight Efforts to Reduce Risk of Harm from Opioid Prescriptions
GAO-18-336T: Published: Jan 17, 2017. Publicly Released: Jan 17, 2018.
GAO recommends that Medicare:
1. Gather information on the full number of at-risk beneficiaries receiving high doses of opioids,
2. Identify providers who prescribe high amounts of opioids, and
3. Require plan sponsors to report to CMS on actions related to providers who inappropriately prescribe opioids.