A Prescriber's Guide to the New Medicare Part D Opioid Overutilization Policies for 2019

Published 11/02/2018

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) understands the magnitude of our nation’s opioid epidemic and its impact on communities. Opioid medications are effective at treating certain types of pain, but have serious risks such as increasing tolerance, addiction, overdose, and death. Given the scope of the crisis, CMS published a roadmap in June 2018 outlining our efforts to address this issue. The roadmap details our three-pronged approach to combating the opioid epidemic going forward: 1) prevention of new cases of opioid use disorder (OUD); 2) treatment of patients who have already become dependent on or addicted to opioids; and 3) utilization of data from across the country to better target prevention and treatment activities. Through our 2019 Medicare Part D opioid overutilization initiatives, CMS seeks to strengthen and broaden our partnership with providers to address the opioid crisis.

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