January 18, 2019
Area(s) of Interest: Drug Prescribing/Dispensing Professional Development & Education
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) implemented new opioid policies for Medicare drug plans effective January 1, 2019. The new policies include safety alerts when patients fill opioid prescriptions and drug management programs for patients at-risk for misuse or abuse of opioids or other drugs.
CMS will be hosting a call on Thursday, February 14 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. Pacific time, to help physicians and other prescribers understand the new policies. During the call, CMS experts will discuss the new policies and answer questions. To register for the call, click here.
For more information on the new policies, see “A Prescriber’s Guide to the New Medicare Part D Opioid Overutilization Policies for 2019” and the CMS Tip Sheet 2019 Medicare Part D Opioid Policies: Information for Prescribers.
The California Medical Association (CMA) submitted comments on these policies when they were first proposed. CMA voiced concerns regarding unintended consequences that may result from restrictive policies that impose a “one-size-fits-all” approach to the practice of medicine. Read CMA’s comments here.
Safe Prescribing Resources
CMA supports a well-balanced approach to opioid prescribing and treatment that considers the unique needs of individual patients. CMA’s safe prescribing resource page includes the most current information and resources on prescribing controlled substances safely and effectively to relieve pain, while simultaneously reducing the risk of prescription medication misuse, addiction and overdose.