Dr. Vivek H. Murthy, our Surgeon General, recently released a report that, among other things, highlights the gap between the widespread substance use disorder problems the country faces and the relatively small amount of abuse treatment. Here’s an excerpt from the New York Times article.

The majority of people who misuse substances do not develop a use disorder, the report said. But roughly one in seven Americans — 14.6 percent of the population — are expected to develop such a disorder at some point.

Only about 10 percent of people with a substance use disorder receive any type of specialty treatment, the report said. And while more than 40 percent of people with such a disorder also have a mental health condition, fewer than half receive treatment for either.

This problem touches everyone. We can change our approach to detect this sooner and get at-risk patients into treatment. Checking every patient, every time, for their prescription history helps find these at-risk patients sooner and more often.

How do you find at-risk patients? Do you check everyone, every time? Let me know how you identify your 14.6%.

When a clinician is prescribing a controlled substance, readily available information about the drugs that a patient is receiving from other providers can be a critically important component of the decision-making process…Increasingly, these [PDMP] programs have evolved into a useful tool for the clinician who must incorporate careful risk management into the prescribing of opioid analgesics or any other controlled substance.

Increasingly, these programs have evolved into a useful tool f…

Editorial  Pain Medicine, The American Academy of Pain Medicine; 2011;12:845

Recommendations for full use of PDMP include:

  • PDMPs can be effective clinical tools in medication management involving controlled substances.
  • PDMPs should be available for clinicians across state boundaries.
  • Every prescribing clinician should be familiar with the process of accessing and utilizing information from PDMP’s so that they can incorporate this information in their practices.

American Society of Addiction Medicine
David Stengle

David Stengle

Chief Marketing Officer at Prescription Advisory
David is Prescription Advisory's Chief Marketing Officer. Software startups are his passion.

He also serves as the Director of Startup Grind Princeton and a mentor for the Princeton University eLab.
David Stengle
Prescription Advisory Systems & Technology

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