Opioid Use and Misuse Resource Center

APhA believes it is imperative that a proper balance be maintained in delivering appropriate pain management for the millions of patients with legitimate needs for controlled substances while taking steps to minimize misuse.  Pharmacists possess unique knowledge about the safe and effective use of medications and about the adverse events resulting from inappropriate use. Such knowledge enables pharmacists to play an important role in patient access to opioids, but also opioid drug misuse prevention, education, and assistance.  

Opioid News
May 20, 2019
How common is inappropriate use of transmucosal immediate-release fentanyl?

In a recent issue of JAMA, Rollman and colleagues evaluated almost 5,000 pages of FDA documents obtained via a Freedom of Information Act to assess whether the REMS program for TIRF products was meeting its goals. Specifically, the researchers reviewed 6 years of REMS data from 2012 to 2017 for the…

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May 6, 2019
Monthly buprenorphine injection could be another favorable option for treating opioid use disorder

BUP-XR was approved by FDA in 2017 as a monthly long-acting injection used to treat patients who have moderate to severe opioid use disorder. The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial took place at 36 U.S. treatment centers from January 2015 to November 2015. Eligible participants—…

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April 30, 2019
CDC cautions against misapplication of 2016 Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain

The authors stressed that the guideline’s recommendations on opioids should not be used for purposes outside of chronic pain management in adults aged 18 years and older. The guideline’s misapplication to other patient populations, such as those undergoing active cancer treatment, acute sickle cell…

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March 29, 2019
Fentanyl-related overdose deaths have increased 1,000% over the past 5 years

In the past decade, the highly potent synthetic opioid, fentanyl, has been increasingly involved in fatal drug overdoses in the United States. Using data from the National Vital Statistics System—Mortality multiple cause-of-death files enhanced with literal text from death certificates, researchers…

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March 19, 2019
National data trends show long-term opioid prescriptions increased over time

The population-based cross-sectional analysis, published in JAMA Network Open on March 15, looked at opioid prescriptions filled among U.S. residents at community pharmacies between January 1, 2006, and December 31, 2017. Researchers considered various measures across states: The annual amount of…

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January 7, 2019
AMA calls on states to remove prior authorization for opioid treatment

Following the news that Pennsylvania will remove prior authorization requirements for medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for opioid-use disorder, the president of the American Medical Association (AMA) called on payers in every state to do the same. “Payers across the nation commonly impose prior-…

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