Your ANSwer for Workers' Compensation Medical Cost Containment

Call Us Today!|info@ans-solutions.com

New Opioids Reduce Pain – and Addiction Risk

A new generation of opioid drugs are on the horizon, possibly offering the much maligned class of drugs a second chance to make a good impression. After years of opioids like oxycodone and fentanyl driving up drug addiction rates nationwide, a second subset of once odious opioids is being introduced, touting all the painkilling power of its conventional counterpart – less the dangerous and deadly side effects.

A Different Approach

While pharmaceutical companies continue to crank out new prescription formulations geared toward treating the side effects of opioid drug use […]

  • prescription drugs ANS pharmacotherapy review
    Permalink Gallery

    Alabama Doctor Arrested In Connection with Matt Roberts of 3 Doors Down Overdose Death

Alabama Doctor Arrested In Connection with Matt Roberts of 3 Doors Down Overdose Death

In mid-August of this year, fans were stunned by the death of 38-year-old Matt Roberts, former guitarist of 3 Doors Down. Alabama physician Dr. Richard Snellgrove was arrested November 16th for allegedly providing the rocker with drugs outside the course of his professional practice. Snellgrove prescribed some five different medications, including methadone, hydrocodone, lorazepam and fentanyl — all prescribed in the names of different individuals, but intended for Roberts.

Slated to perform at a charity event for veterans, the rocker’s father, Darrell Roberts, who often traveled […]

How Common is Illegal Drug Use Among Pain Patients?

At the American Pain Society’s 35th Annual Scientific Meeting in Austin, findings were released on the use of illicit substances among chronic pain patients. Of 450,081 patients included in a study by Baltimore-based pain medication monitoring firm Ameritox, 10.4% of urine samples tested positive for the use of at least one illicit substance.

How Many of Those Identified Were Workers Comp Patients?
Workers compensation was the primary payer for 22,525 of the 450,081 patients in the study, conducted between January 2013 and July 2015, which showed the use of illicit substances […]

Opioids Still the Top Prescribed Drug in California

Using data derived from the 10.8 million workers comp prescriptions dispensed between January 2005 and December 2014, a recently released report by the California Workers’ Compensation Institute identified opioids as the number one prescribed drug in California’s workers’ compensation system.

Report findings indicate that opioid prescriptions accounted for 27.2% of total prescribed pharmaceuticals. In addition, the average cost of opioid prescriptions rose by 85% from $61 to $113. In comparison, other prescription drugs within the same time frame experienced only a 39% increase, from $94 to $131. The report also […]

By |June 28th, 2016|Opioid Abuse, Pharmacotherapy Review|Comments Off

2016 WCRI Annual Issues & Research Conference

ANS recently attended the 2016 WCRI Annual Issues & Research Conference. The independent, not-for-profit institute studies and delivers objective information pertaining to public policy issues involving the workers’ comp system.

 

 

Conference Panel Highlights:

  • Opioid Prescribing in Workers’ Comp
    • Overview:
      Opioids are a societal problem – not just a workers’ comp issue, and it will take a decade to dig ourselves out. Guidelines are necessary to combat the growing trend.
    • Positive Trends:
      Prescription frequency varies widely by state, leading to revised prescribing guidelines in medical/workers’ comp communities. Retail pharmacies are no longer simply filling, but verifying […]

By |March 30th, 2016|Opioid Abuse, Pharmacotherapy Review|Comments Off

FDA Focuses on Opioid Policy

The FDA has recently acknowledged its own need to establish a “far-reaching action plan to reassess the agency’s approach to opioid medications” in order to reduce the trend, deemed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as “a serious public health issue.” Now the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S., more Americans currently die from drug overdoses annually than motor vehicle crashes, the majority of which can be linked back to opioid prescription medications such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, fentanyl, and others.

National Attention

In addition […]

By |March 15th, 2016|Opioid Abuse, Pharmacotherapy Review|Comments Off

6 Ways Pain Management is Mismanaged

There is a significant body of evidence suggesting that many Americans suffer from chronic pain and much of that pain is inadequately or ineffectively treated. Particularly in the case of chronic pain treatment via opioid analgesics, proper chronic pain management is critical in determining whether opioids are used in a manner that is both medically appropriate and in compliance with regulations. Pain management is an important area of patient care that is integral to the practice of medicine, yet so often it is mismanaged. Here we review six most […]

  • ANS Pharmacotherapy Reivew fights the nation's opioid epidemic
    Permalink Gallery

    Abuse Deterrent Opioids a New Era of Opioid Drug Development

Abuse Deterrent Opioids a New Era of Opioid Drug Development

The prevalence of opioid use and abuse has led to a new era of opioid drug development: Abuse deterrent (AD) opioids.

The goal?….

Maintain the efficacy of opioid formulations while improving their ability to deter abuse. Following guidelines developed by the FDA to categorize new opioid formulations, pharmaceutical companies are now on a quest to develop tomorrow’s safety net against opioid abuse.

How will the FDA be categorizing these new AD opioid formulations?

  1. Physical/chemical barriers
    Physical barriers that prevent the crushing, cutting, grating, grinding, or chewing of opioid formulations, alone or in combination […]

  • Steps to combat the opioid epidemic using ANS drug utilization review
    Permalink Gallery

    Strategies to Reduce Patient Reliance on Opioids Postoperatively

Strategies to Reduce Patient Reliance on Opioids Postoperatively

Surgeons across the nation are increasing efforts to reduce their overall use of opioids for the long term treatment of chronic pain post-operatively. The driving force- Curtailing the opioid abuse epidemic, an unfortunate but growing trend.

Well-Documented Risks
An epidemic effecting 5 million Americans, half of all opioid-related overdose deaths in the U.S. have been linked to prescription drugs – not “street” or “recreational” drugs. Opioid use, even short term, is particularly problematic for patients with a history of substance abuse.

Changing Practices
Seeing the effects of this epidemic, many surgeons are taking […]

The Perils of Polypharmacy

Pharmacotherapy review reduces costs and minimizes risks present by polypharmacyIn the context of large loss workers compensation claims and the treatment of pain in injured workers, polypharmacy is typically associated with the use of four or more medications. As a result, polypharmacy creates an environment where several complications can occur. Here we delve into some critical issues affecting the injured worker as a result of polypharmacy: compliance, drug interaction and risk of addiction.

Dosage Compliance & Drug Interactions

To put it […]