Health Care Providers
Improve Opioid Prescribing
Clinical practice guidelines help patients have access to safer, more effective pain treatment and reduce the risk of patient misuse or overdose from prescription opioids. For situations where the risks of opioids are greater than the benefits, reducing exposure to prescription opioids is a key part of prevention.
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This resource (PDF) provides recommendations for prescribing opioid pain medication for patients 18 and older in primary care settings. The guidelines focus on prescribing opioids for treating chronic pain outside of active cancer treatment, palliative care, and end-of-life care. Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
This webpage links to multiple resources from the CDC to help providers balance pain management options with the potential risks of prescription opioids. Resources include downloadable fact sheets, pocket guides, and checklists on topics such as non-opioid treatment for pain, assessing benefits and risks, tapering opioids, and calculating dosage.
This guide provides information on prescribing opioids for chronic pain, opioid stewardship, and information on opioid use disorder management. The Center for Innovation in Academic Detailing (CIAO) offers additional educational materials on opioid safety, naloxone, and academic detailing. Source: CIAO, in partnership with CDPH
For several reasons, including clinic closures and provider shortages, providers may inherit patients receiving treatment with opioid therapy. Providers are encouraged to consider these best practices in these instances: 1) Continue opioid therapy for patients in transition, 2) Develop a patient-centered, individualized care plan, 3) Use caution when tapering opioid therapy, 4) Document patient care decisions, and 5) Prescribe buprenorphine when appropriate.