Welcome to the Pharmacy Opioid Education Hub

Pharmacists are important stakeholders in changing the course of the opioid crisis. As health care providers at the point of opioid dispensing, pharmacists wear many hats. Technology built in to clinical workflow combined with relationships built with community residents give pharmacists the ability to identify “red flags” in prescribing—high doses of opioids, multiple prescriptions from multiple prescribers and pharmacies—that place individuals at risk for overdose and to provide access to naloxone as needed. Pharmacists are educators that promote safe medication storage and disposal. Through collaborations with local physicians, other pharmacies, and law enforcement, pharmacists are the first line of defense against potential abuse, misuse, and diversion. For these many reasons, we have created this Pharmacy Opioid Education Hub dedicated to pharmacy education and resources.

Heeding the Call for Safe and Responsible Pain Management in Our Communities

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This webcast features an expert faculty panel discussion on the underlying mechanisms of acute and chronic pain pathways and how to utilize this knowledge to implement appropriate pain management strategies and educate patients about their pain, thus optimizing safe and effective, multimodal treatment plans.

Completion of the post-test and evaluation is necessary to meet the requirements of REMS. CME Outfitters is responsible for submitting your completion information to the FDA.  This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Curbing the Impact of the Opioid Epidemic: Arm Yourselves with the Latest Tools and Strategies to Manage OUD

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This video is a replay of a plenary session from the 12th Annual Chair Summit Master Class for Neuroscience Professional Development held in Las Vegas, NV from February 27 – 29, 2020.

At the end of this CE activity, participants should be able to:

  • Analyze the latest clinical evidence on the use of MOUD and its various formulations and routes of delivery to promote long-term recovery and relapse prevention.
  • Apply collaborative care strategies to optimize the management of OUD in patients with Comorbidity psychiatric illness.

A Grassroots Approach to Weed Out HIV and HCV in Special OUD Populations

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Injection drug use (IDU) has been fueled by the opioid crisis, resulting in a dramatic increase in hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections. People with opioid use disorder (OUD) are 28 times more likely to contract HIV, and one in 10 new HIV infections is attributed to IDU. Further, the CDC reported a 233% increase in new HCV infections between 2010-2016.

Join the panel discussion as faculty discuss strategies for HIV and HCV testing in special OUD populations, applying evidence-based treatment approaches, as well as prevention strategies, including PrEP, for patients with OUD at high risk for HIV infection.  This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Initiating Medication-Assisted Therapy for OUD in Diverse Settings: Clinical Pearls for Navigating the Process

Participate Now The opioid abuse epidemic has resulted in an alarming increase in opioid-related overdoses and deaths; however, the severe and lethal consequences of opioid misuse are preventable with the use of medication-assisted treatment (MAT), which is a proven, effective tool for patients with opioid use disorder (OUD). This CME Outfitters Snack features expert faculty expanding on best practices for MAT initiation particularly in diverse care settings such as the VA system, criminal justice settings, hospitals, and outpatient clinics, by examining the neurobiology of opioid addiction and the efficacy of opioid agonists and antagonists in reducing illicit opioid use.

Putting Pressure on Opioid Prescribing: Novel Approaches to Pain Management

Participate Now Opioids continue to impact all corners of the United States and its communities, a burden that continues to grow at a rapid pace. The current opioid crisis is incredibly challenging for both patients and health care providers (HCPs). There has been a 30% increase in overdoses among men and a 24% increase among women, with all ages affected. While changing these current trends is important, it cannot be accomplished by policy changes alone. There is no one size fits all model for communities to address this crisis.  This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Time To Listen: What The Experts Have To Say About Safe Opioid Prescribing And Addiction Treatment

Participate Now This CME Outfitters activity features insight from this panel of experts on the challenges, consequences, and opportunities for the development of education to help meet the pain management needs of patients amid rising concerns of addiction and diversion.

Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Reducing the Burden of Pain in a Changing Treatment Landscape

Participate Now Developing actionable steps to promote appropriate prescribing for individuals with acute and chronic pain is imperative to curbing the impact of the growing opioid crisis facing our communities.

Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: New Approaches to Safe and Effective Pain Management

Participate Now In part 2 of this 3-part series, expert faculty focus on the four-step approach that follows the SOAP (Subjective-Objective-Assessment-Plan) approach to pain management, as well as principles of communication with patients experiencing pain in order to help clinicians appropriately prescribe the best therapy for pain management in each patient.

Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: Principles of Communication and Recognizing Patient Needs

Participate Now The conclusion of this 3-part series features expert faculty focusing on a collaborative patient-centered approach in order to guide optimal pain management, which includes applying an evidence-based approach to chronic pain management and improving prescribing practices through pharmacovigilance.

Addressing the Opioid Epidemic: A Call to Action to Save Our Communities

Participate Now Join Dr. Gold and Dr. Stanos in augmented reality illustration of pain management strategies to optimize safe and responsible management of acute and chronic pain. This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Understanding the Big Picture of Pain and Pain Assessment

Participate Now The key to pain management is helping patients function better so that they can return to doing the things they enjoy. In this CME Snack, expert faculty discuss pain assessment tools and risk stratification so that clinicians can work together with patients to restore function and improve quality of life.  This activity is also available as a podcast>> 

Providing the Right Expectations: Understanding the Pathophysiology of Pain

Participate Now Evaluating patients with chronic pain can be a daunting task, as the nervous system is complex and knowing which type of pain the patient is experiencing – neuropathic, nociceptive, or nociplastic – is the best guide for where clinicians should focus their treatment decisions. In this CME Snack on understanding and treating pain, expert faculty focus on the pathophysiology of pain and the underlying mechanisms to assessment and appropriate management.  This activity is also available as a podcast>> 

The Role that Gender Plays in Pain Perception, Treatment, and Addiction

Participate Now Gender plays an important role in pain, pain reception, and opioid use.  In this CME Snack, expert faculty discuss how gender and sexual trauma and/or abuse affects a patient’s proclivity to substance abuse disorders. This activity is also available as a podcast>> 

Shifting Perspectives on Pain Management in Oral Surgery

Participate Now In a survey of 1,015,116 opioid naïve patients undergoing surgery, total duration of opioid use was the strongest predictor of misuse and the greatest risk for individuals in the 15-24 age group. Young people aged 15-24 often get their first exposure to opioids with dental surgery. In a survey of randomly selected oral surgeons conducted by Dr. Abubaker and colleagues, the average number of opioid tablets prescribed was 20, with 22% prescribing more than 20 tablets, and 11% prescribing more than 30 tablets. These risk factors, combined with the current epidemic, has led many oral surgeons to believe that the old standards of depending on opioids as a first-line treatment should be a thing of the past. In this free CME Snack, Dr. Gold and Dr. Abubaker share insights on alternative pain management strategies for oral pain with a focus on finding a balance between compassion for patient care and patient safety. This activity is also available as a podcast>>

How PAs are Improving Skill Sets to Approach Opioid Use

Participate Now Opioid medications are among the most powerful medications available for the treatment of acute severe pain. Many patients start down the road of opioid addiction when prescribed opioids the first time following a surgery, trauma, or injury. In a 2017 survey of PAs clinical practice, PAs are not only prescribing schedule II and II drugs but are managing patients with pain in their practices and have expressed a need for education on both prescribing opioids and managing their patients, particularly for those of underserved populations. In this CME Snack on best ways to approach opioid use, expert faculty discuss the importance of gathering comprehensive patient histories that include substance use information, listening to patient stories, and the wellness component of treating patients with pain. This activity is also available as a podcast>> 

Managing the Complexity of Chronic Pain in the Primary Care Setting

Participate Now Primary care physicians can play a key role in making a difference in the opioid epidemic. PCPs are responsible for approximately 50% of opioid prescriptions and need to incorporate best practice strategies to optimize safe and competent prescribing, therefore minimizing potential for abuse and diversion.  Although chronic pain is not something a physician can cure, if the patient feels understood and heard treatment will be more successful. This CME Snack focuses on the complexity of chronic pain and how best to manage it in a primary care setting, with expert faculty discussing how PCPs and their patients can make informed decisions together.  This activity is also available as a podcast>> 

New Perspectives and Approaches from Orthopedic Surgeons for the Management of Acute Pain

Participate Now In light of the current opioid crisis, many states have put forward prescribing mandates and limits for opioids, clinical practice guidelines can provide guidance for treatment decisions for acute pain in the management of minor to major musculoskeletal injuries. In this CME Snack, expert faculty discuss non-opioid approaches to acute pain and the new Orthopaedic Trauma Association Clinical Practice Guidelines for Acute Pain Management. Download the Orthopaedic Trauma Association Clinical Practice Guidelines for Acute Pain Management. This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Fatal Attraction: Why are Opioids so Addicting?

Participate Now Early in the opioid crisis, physicians were the principle source of opioid use and abuse due to overprescribing, often leading to patients storing leftover prescriptions at home and friends or family members finding and using these leftovers. Unfortunately, simply restricting opioid prescriptions is not an effective strategy in a culture that has wildly available and accessible drugs of abuse available.  In this CME Snack, Dr. Mark S. Gold focuses on the biological underpinnings of opioid addiction in order to educate clinicians on how to address the opioid epidemic in their communities. Resources: How to Properly Dispose of Your Unused Medicines. This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Opioid Use Disorder in Special Populations: Making Recovery a Goal

Participate Now The opioid epidemic is ravaging many parts of the United States, resulting in drug overdose deaths emerging as the leading cause of injury death. Two populations in particular warrant attention of healthcare providers: incarcerated individuals and veterans. Approximately half of state and federal prisoners meet criteria for substance use disorder, and the number of veterans addicted to opioids rose 55% between 2010 and 2015. Participate in this webcast as faculty discuss best practices to reduce the risk of relapse or death among special populations with OUD.  This activity is also available as a podcast>> 

Championing Change: Addressing Addiction in Our Communities

Participate Now In this CME Snack, Jessica Nickel, founder of the Addiction Policy Forum, and Dr. Mark Gold focus on community-based strategies to provide an effective care settings for those dealing with substance use disorder. This activity is also available as a podcast>>

Conducting an ePain Assessment: Asking the Right Questions, Using the Best Tools

Participate NowCase-based learning is helpful in illustrating not just strategies for managing challenging patients, but also in sharing experiences and insights on maintaining quality care when facing changes in clinical workflow. To help clinicians adapt to virtual appointments, part one of this CME Outfitters BriefCase series features expert faculty presenting a case vignette that demonstrates tips for performing psychosocial and physical assessments via a telehealth appointment in order to educate clinicians on appropriate management of pain and the viability of Telehealth for pain evaluation and ongoing management

Are You Seeing the Big Picture?: A Multimodal Approach to the Management of Pain

Participate NowPart two of this CME Outfitters BriefCase series revisits the patient case from part one, with a focus on how best to handle prescribing, patient education, and shared decision-making via telehealth appointments.

Opioid Red Flags: Examining the Options and Taking the Next Steps

Participate Now The final episode of this CME Outfitters Briefcase series focuses on identifying the red flags of OUD and best options for taking the next steps to engage patients and develop appropriate treatment strategies.

Ask Before Dispensing: Risk Assessment and Counseling of Patients Prescribed Opioids

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This CME Outfitters BriefCase will replicate a real-world patient case scenario and usevinteractive technology focused on proper risk assessment, and strategies for counseling patients about their pain and utilizing nonopioid pain management as a means of optimizing a safe and effective, multimodal treatment plan.

Partnering with Patients: Counseling Patients About Non-Opioid Pain Options

Participate Now The second installment of this CME Outfitters BriefCase series on addressing the opioid epidemic in our communities focuses on how HCPs can educate their patients about their pain and about nonopioid pain management in order to optimize safe and effective, multimodal treatment plans.

Keeping Patients Safe: Educating About Safe Disposal of Opioids to Prevent Diversion

Participate Now The final installment in this CME Outfitters BriefCase series highlights a patient case study that focuses on keeping patients safe by educating them on the proper storage and disposal of opioids.

Are You Seeing the Whole Picture? Assessing Pain and the Multitude of Factors that Influence Pain Perception

Participate NowKnowledge of acute and chronic pain pathways and their underlying mechanisms are imperative to the fundamentals of pain management and provide a comprehensive framework for appropriate clinical assessment and management of pain. The first episode of this CMEOCast podcast series on the treatment and monitoring of pain features faculty focusing on the whole picture of pain assessment and the factors that influence pain perception with the goal of educating clinicians on how to apply their knowledge of pain pathways to better counsel and treat their patients with acute and chronic pain.

A Collaborative Approach to Pain: Working with Your Patients to Reach an Informed Pain Management Plan

Participate NowThere are currently 50 million Americans living with chronic pain, which can result in restrictions in mobility and daily activities, dependence on opioids, anxiety and depression, and reduced quality of life (QoL) leading to it being one of the most common reasons for seeking medical care. This CMEOCast podcast focuses on educating clinicians to evaluate their current workflow for opioid prescribing, including incorporating best practice strategies that will optimize safe and competent prescribing and therefore minimize the potential for abuse and diversion.

Breaking the Ice: Talking to Your Patients About Naloxone

Participate Now Due to the considerable number of risk factors for overdose in patients with OUD or those on high dose opioids for chronic pain, it is imperative that health careprofessionals (HCPs) are familiar with the use of naloxone and its availability. Naloxone products for home use by patients or caregivers can reduce the risk of overdose deaths in both patients and household contacts; therefore, it is imperative that HCPs educate patients who are at risk for overdose on its role and means of administration.  The final episode of this CMEOCast podcast series highlights the multitude of risk factors for opioid overdose that clinicians treating patients with chronic pain need to be aware of, as well as strategies for counseling patients about naloxone.

CMEOCast: Can an Over the Counter Drug Really Take Care of Post-Operative Pain?

Participate NowIn the first episode of this CMEOCast podcast series on practice guidelines for pain management, expert faculty discuss utilizing a validated tool to assess patients for risk of misuse and diversion of opioids, as well as applying evidence that supports non-opioid management and whether over the counter treatment options can adequately treat post-operative pain.

CMEOCast: Patient Education to Manage Expectations About Pain and Pain Management

Participate NowThis second episode in a CMEOCast series focuses on making informative treatment decisions for pain management in order to change habits and improve outcomes. As part of that process is to educate patients in order to manage their expectations, it features expert faculty discussing strategies on how to best assess patients for misuse and communicate necessary information with patients.

CMEOCast: Myth-Busting About NSAIDs and Bone Health

Participate NowThe third episode of this CMEOCast series focuses on busting these myths about NSAIDs and bone health by applying evidence and guideline recommendations that support non-opioid pain management in treatment decision-making.

CMEOCast: Talking Safety and NSAIDs

Participate NowThis fourth and final episode in the series features expert faculty discussing the precautions to take when prescribing NSAIDs for acute and chronic pain.

CMEOCast: In It for the Long Game: Examining the Role of Extended-Release MAT (or MOUD) in Relapse Prevention in OUD

Participate NowThe first episode in this three-part CMEOcast podcast series on best practices in OUD analyzes the latest clinical updates on the safety and efficacy of extended-release MAT for OUD in order to improve clinical outcomes for struggling patients

CMEOCast: Helping Your Patients Over the Detox Hurdle: Strategies for Successful Outcomes

Participate NowIn the second episode of this three-part CMEOcast podcast series, OUD experts discuss best practices for managing detoxification in patients transitioning to MAT from opioid dependence and how clinicians can implement them in their practice.

CMEOCast: Best Practices: Applying Extended-Release MAT (or MOUD) in Real-World Settings

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The final episode of the three-part CMEOcast podcast series focuses on applying evidence-based strategies to initiating the use of extended-release MOUD in real-world settings, providing best practices for supporting the recovery process of individuals with OUD.

Visualizing Pain and Addiction: An Augmented Reality Discussion

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This CMEOCast podcast of an augmented reality symposium discusses the brain/body reaction to pain and factors that influence pain perception and educates learners about acute and chronic pain pathways so that they may optimize safe and competent prescribing while still appropriately managing pain.

 

The Role of the Pharmacist in Identifying Signs of Opioid Use Disorder

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The impact of opioids on the United States and its communities is a constantly growing burden and is challenging for patients and the health care community. Pharmacists are important members of the treatment team, particularly when it comes to addressing the opioid crisis.

This CMEOCast podcast episode features expert faculty focused on the role of the pharmacist in communicating with patients about their prescribed opioids and in recommending and/or dispensing naloxone to individuals prescribed opioids who may be at risk for overdose, and available options for medicated assisted treatment (MAT).

Team-Based Strategies to Address Patients’ Pain Needs

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While team-based care is the best approach to managing patients with pain, it is not always easy, with lack of communication and education often being the biggest concerns. Here, we examine the role of pharmacists in educating patients about their pain to optimize safe and effective treatment plans.

In this CMEOCast podcast about team-based strategies that address patients’ pain needs, expert faculty discuss the management of pain from acute injury, dental procedures, and minor surgery as well as that of patients with chronic pain, including strategies that promote improved communication among the treatment team and educating patients about their pain.

An Animated Look at Acute and Chronic Pain Pathways Download the Animation Guide here (PDF)

Download Animated Look at Acute and Chronic Pain Pathways Video

Understanding Pain Pathways

Download Understanding Pain Pathways Video

A Way Forward: How Naloxone Saves Lives from Opioid Overdose

Increasing access to naloxone is essential to reducing overdose mortality. Strategies for increasing access must be thoughtfully developed and deployed to ensure that naloxone is available to any at-risk individual—whether that be an individual with chronic pain or someone with a substance use disorder—without the burden of stigma or judgement. CMEO convened an expert panel led by Dr. Mark Gold to discuss barriers and opportunities for distribution of naloxone to those at risk for overdose in the community. This white paper, A Way Forward: How Naloxone Saves Lives from Opioid Overdose reviews the data used by the panelists to establish their positions and recommendations for the way forward.

The Addiction Policy Forum is a nationwide nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating addiction as a major health problem. Our national headquarters are located in Washington, DC with resources and services in every state.

Why are Drugs So Hard to Quit?

The Disease Model of Addiction

Naloxone Toolkit

Naloxone Administration

Naloxone Facts

Addiction & the Brain

Facts About Drugs of Abuse
Resources for Teens and College Students

From Analytics to Understanding: A Look Into Our 3D Pain Animation’s Debut at CME Outfitters’ Opioid Epidemic Premiere Symposium

Read More Family medicine providers are uniquely qualified to lead the charge for precise and responsible prescribing for acute and chronic pain. Family medicine is at the forefront of managing chronic illness, handling comorbidities, and coordinating care for their patients. A recent live meeting held at the Pennsylvania Academy of Family Physicians (PAFP) used an animated 3-D model that learners were able to move, rotate, and zoom as they explored acute and chronic pain pathways.

Brainstorming Opioid Addiction through Merged Perspectives: Learnings from Roundtable Discussions

Read Now According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, 115 people die each day in the United States due to an opioid overdose. To better understand the nation’s current epidemic, CME Outfitters recently brought together the perspectives of those most impacted by opioids in hopes of creating more effective strategies to avoid addiction in the coming years. These roundtable discussions, hosted by CME Outfitters, first pulled the experiences of both patients and their loved ones who have been affected by opioid dependency. Read more about the the four key takeaways that we learned.