IAIABC Opioid Policy Inventory (August 2018)


Background For more than a decade, the United States has faced a public health crisis from the increasing use of opioids in the treatment of both acute and chronic pain. Each year, the number of deaths from opioid overdose (prescription and illicit) rises and countless more individuals struggle with addiction, recovery, and pain management. 1 The devastation extends to family members, friends, and communities across the country. The impact is also felt by the workplace and workers’ compensation programs. Inappropriate use of opioids in the treatment of injured workers was identified as a critical issue by several states more than a decade ago and since that time, the workers’ compensation industry has worked to implement strategies to reduce the inappropriate use of opioids in the treatment of work injuries and encourage recovery and return to work. The IAIABC Medical Issues Committee undertook the Opioid Policy Inventory initiative to identify and catalog strategies being used throughout the United States to address the opioid epidemic. The goal of this initiative is to provide a resource on strategies that can inform and encourage collaboration between states, communities, and stakeholders throughout the nation. The Inventory includes information on 23 different strategies including initiatives in healthcare,

data collection and analysis, and within the judicial system. Five strategies are specific to workers’ compensation systems. Whilemany of the strategies describedmay not explicitly mention workers’compensation, they can still impact the treatment of injuredworkers andworkers’ compensation business processes. One example is a state’s opioid day supply restriction which applies to prescriptions to all patients in a state. Opioid dosage and day restrictions may also impact howprescriptions are validated and authorized by pharmacy benefit managers. It is important for the workers’compensation community to be aware and understand how these policies work and the application within the industry. In addition to the summary highlights provided in this publication, complete state responses are available upon request. The IAIABC made every effort to validate collected responses. However, efforts to confront the opioid epidemic change frequently. If you are aware of any updates to this information, please send them to administration@iaiabc.org . The information in the Opioid Policy Inventory is for informational purposes only. No legislative, regulatory, medical, claims handling, or legal actions should be taken based solely on this information. 1 In 2016, 42,249 died from overdosing on opioid; of these, 15,469 were attributed to overdosing on heroin. Mortality in the United States, 2016 , NCHS Data Brief, No. 293, December 2017.

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