Opioid Prescribing

What’s the issue?

  • Prescribing is one point of access for opioids in a patient’s continuum of care.
  • Illinois now requires prescriber with an Illinois controlled substance license – including physicians, physician assistants, nurses, dentists, and others – to enroll in the prescription monitoring program (PMP).
  • The PMP will then provide information on their patient’s prescription history.
  • Prescribers are required to attempt to check the PMP prior to writing an initial prescription for a Schedule II opioid, with limited exceptions.
  • Patients have been known to get multiple prescriptions from multiple sources, or even worse, steal prescribing pads to access other dangerous prescription drugs.

Why does it matter?

  • Illinois prescription monitoring program (PMP) was not electronic prior to January 1, 2000.  Prior to that date it had been a paper system for 15 years.
  • Participating in the PMP was not mandatory in Illinois until the legislature passed “The Heroin Crisis Act of 2015” which required everyone with a controlled substance license to sign up for the PMP when they renew their licenses.
  • Promoting safer prescribing and dispensing practices, encouraging prescriber education and guidelines, are crucial to halting the increased rate of opioid addictions and fatalities.
  • According to the CDC, 40% of all opioid overdose deaths involve a prescription opioid.
  • There is a need for a greater emphasis on overdose prevention and treatment, and to coordinate and amplify the efforts and best practices already occurring across the country.
  • If you need to register as part of the Illinois Prescription Monitoring Program use this link.

What is the AMITA Health perspective?

  • Patient safety is extremely important to AMITA Health.  AMITA Health supports the concept of using an electronic means to record, and check, a patient’s prescription history before making a clinical decision.  We currently employ numerous quality checks and safeguards to make sure the right medical reaches the right patient at the right time.
  • We respect our physician partners.  We recognize that physicians at times face workflow issues and we strive to be partners to find solutions when that occurs.  AMITA Health uses dynamic quality and patient safety programs aimed at facilitating robust physician teams and learning environments to identify near misses, adverse events and unsafe processes to prevent the occurrence of any future event.
  • We are all part of the solution. The opioid crisis affects everyone in the state in some way. Its victims are of all ages, races, and walks of life. The causes of the epidemic are complex.  As the largest provider of behavioral health services in the state, we work with everyone—health care providers, local agencies, law enforcement, community groups, individual citizens, and national partners—toward a comprehensive solution.

Featured News

Featured news includes articles from multiple viewpoints and is designed to keep you abreast of the current debate around this issue. This information should not be construed as our point of view.

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