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    Opioid prescription limits gain support


    A pharmacist organization is among the supporters of a new Medicare Part D proposal, which calls for a 7-day supply limit on opioid prescriptions.

    Related: DEA slashes opioid drug production

    While executives with the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) have not been able to fully review the proposal, the organization in general advocates for “a change in public policy to create a 7-day supply limit for initial opioid prescriptions issued for acute pain, which is consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain,” Chris Krese, spokesman for NACDS, told FormularyWatch.

    “CDC’s clinical evidence suggests that a greater amount of initial opioid exposure is associated with a greater risk for long-term use and addiction. More than 20 states already have taken action, and federal action is needed for consistent patient care,” Krese added.

    Related: How FDA aims to support generic opioids

    As part of the proposal, CMS would also expect all sponsors to implement soft POS safety edits (which can be overridden by a pharmacist) based on duplicative therapy of multiple long-acting opioids, and request feedback on concurrent prescription opioid and benzodiazepine soft edits, the agency said in a fact sheet about the proposal.

    CMS also proposes enhancing the Overutilization Monitoring System (OMS) by identifying high-risk beneficiaries who use “potentiator” drugs, such as gabapentin (Neurontin, Gralise, and others) and pregabalin (Lyrica) in combination with prescription opioids to “ensure that plans provide appropriate case management,” CMS said. 

    Read more: CDC issues opioid prescribing guidelines


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