Implementation of WellManaged-Opioids Program Results in Decreased Overall Opioid Use and Chronic Users

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) attributes the dramatic spike in opioid-related overdose deaths to prescription opioid pain relievers. Opioids are commonly prescribed for pain and an estimated 20% of patients presenting to physician offices with non-cancer pain symptoms or pain-related diagnoses (including acute and chronic pain) receive an opioid prescription. In 2012, health care providers wrote 259 million prescriptions for opioid pain medication, enough for every adult in the United States to have a bottle of pills. Of even greater concern is that despite this increase in opioid prescriptions, the pain that Americans report remains unchanged. The statistics are staggering with the rate of opioid-related deaths in the United States tripling since 2000. Since 1999, there have been more than 165,000 overdose deaths related to prescription opioids.

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