Indiana continues to ratchet up efforts to combat prescription drug abuse. The latest step is a new website to give citizens a place to find information, but the website launch at the Indiana State Fair Aug 16 had some important words for physicians as well.
“We have to recognize prescription drug abuse for the serious problem that it is,” said Joan Duwve, M.D., chief medical officer at the Indiana State Department of Health and co-chair of the state’s Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Task Force, which includes representatives from the ISMA.
Dr. Duwve noted that one in five Hoosier high school students has used controlled substances without a prescription. “What is perceived as a ‘safe’ high, because a doctor prescribed it, too often ends up being deadly,” she said.
Noting that 718 Hoosiers died from accidental drug overdoses in 2011, Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller is responding to protect lives. Since January 2012, he has taken action against more than 15 physicians for prescribing addictive painkillers outside of what is considered medically appropriate.
The website for your patients
Your patients can find the new Rx Public Awareness site, created to help people of all ages, on the in.gov website.
“Whether you are seeking ideas on how to talk to your teenager about whether they are abusing prescription drugs, searching for help for yourself or a loved one or just want to know how to properly dispose of your unwanted medications, this new website serves as a one-stop shop,” Zoeller told fairgoers at the launch.
Soon, the task force will release a toolkit to help physicians with controlled substance prescribing. It also will be located here under Clinical Resources, where you can now sign up to receive announcements.
You still can register and obtain continuing medical education (CME) credit for the ISMA event "Responsible Pain Management Prescribing: Compliance Monitoring" to be held in conjunction with the 164th Annual Convention, Sept. 20 at the JW Marriott in Indianapolis. Find details here.
Also, check out a CME event in November, a collaboration by the Indiana Office of the Attorney General’s Prescription Drug Abuse Task Force and the ISMA here. Find archived education at this site as well.
Access pain management and drug abuse webinars and online education offered by the ISMA here.