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Emergency Physicians Use New Tool to Detect Drug-Seekers in the ER
Date:7/10/2013

atients as drug-seekers, while the PDMP assessed 23.2 percent of patients as drug-seekers (defined in this study as patients who had four or more opiate prescriptions from four or more providers in 12 months).

After reviewing data in the PDMP, emergency physicians changed their prescribing plan for 9.5 percent of patients: 6.5 percent more patients received a prescription that was not previously planned and 3.0 percent did not receive a prescription that was originally planned.

"Data from the PDMP shows us that patients who request medication by name, had multiple visits for the same complaint, had a suspicious history or had symptoms out of proportion to their examination are more likely to have drug-seeking behavior," said Dr. Weiner.  "This information can help us strike that balance between treating legitimate pain and restricting opiate access to those with abuse potential.  Our study suggests that the use of certain criteria combined with prescription monitoring programs may help us find that sweet spot in the middle."

Annals of Emergency Medicine is the peer-reviewed scientific journal for the American College of Emergency Physicians, the national medical society representing emergency medicine. ACEP is committed to advancing emergency care through continuing education, research, and public education. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, ACEP has 53 chapters representing each state, as well as Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. A Government Services Chapter represents emergency physicians employed by military branches and other government agencies. For more information, visit www.acep.org.


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SOURCE American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP)
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