Nation’s Leading Medical Society Releases Position Statement on Drug Formularies in Workers’ Compensation

The American prescription drug epidemic continues to inspire action across the country by Federal, State, Private, Public, and Not-For-Profit entities. The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) has published a position paper (Download Here) aimed at State Regulators, Medical Directors, Medical Advisory Committees, and all other parties involved in adopting drug formularies in hopes of curbing the inappropriate prescription of pharmaceuticals.

Founded in 1916, ACOEM is the nation’s largest medical society, researching issues pertinent to Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Its guidance and research has been used/referenced by many prominent institutions on the forefront of healthcare; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the latest organization to leverage ACOEM’s work to inform the development of the CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain (See ACOEM’s Letter to the CDC expressing support/sharing research for its recommendations on the use of opioids to treat chronic non-cancer pain).

Making ACOEM’s formulary position paper unique and particularly valuable is:

  1. It was researched and developed by ACOEM’s Task Force on Workers’ Compensation on Formularies – a committee of renowned Occupational Health experts and ACOEM fellows including Manijeh Berenji, MD; Robert Blink, MD; William Gaines, MD; Robert Goldberg, MD; Kathryn Mueller MD; and Paul Papanek, MD
  2. It provides the much needed perspective of practicing clinicians working the front-lines of the battle against prescription drug abuse
  3. Included guidance on prompt fill scenarios/considerations
  4. Included detailed table highlighting various characteristics of prominent, currently available commercial and public domain drug formularies

With public policy activity around prescription drug standards reaching an all-time high in 2016, and expected to continue in 2017, ACOEM’s guidance is very timely and greatly needed.

There is no substitute for sound medical guidance on policies impacting the quality of care provided to the American worker following a work-related injury or illness.

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