Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs Are Unable to Combat Overdose, Finds Study



Prescription drug monitoring applications are actually getting used extensively in a number of American states, however there’s a dearth of knowledge on their effectiveness in curbing the variety of opioid overdoses, as came upon by a latest examine. The rationale behind utilizing these applications is to forestall the replication or overlapping of prescriptions for opioids – the follow generally generally known as physician procuring.


Chris Delcher, from the division of well being outcomes within the College of Florida School of Drugs, stated that it is very important perceive if these applications are serving to in any manner by curbing the deadly and non-fatal overdoses. In line with him, in an period the place the modifications are being made and applied on the federal stage to fight the opioid epidemic, it’s pure to evaluate the utility of such applications.

Delcher and his staff revealed their findings within the journal Annals of Inner Drugs in Could 2018. The examine was sponsored collectively by the Bureau of Justice Help and the Nationwide Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and it was led by the scientists from the College of California, Davis and the Columbia College.


The staff of researchers investigated as many as 2,600 scientific publications and located that solely 10 linked prescription drug monitoring applications to overdoses. Even in these 10 research, the staff discovered an exceedingly low proof of the effectiveness of the applications in lowering deadly overdoses, resulting in inconclusive outcomes.

Inadvertent outcomes


The examine authors got here throughout some stunning findings. Three research confirmed that after the implementation of the prescription drug monitoring applications, there was an increase in overdose-related deaths on account of heroin. A 2013 examine confirmed that in Philadelphia and San Francisco, there was a transition from prescribed drugs to heroin due to the latter’s straightforward accessibility and low-cost value.

Furthermore, in 2011 in Florida, after the implementation of this system, the variety of overdoses dropped on account of oxycodone, however there was a concomitant rise in overdoses associated to fentanyl, heroin and morphine. Delcher defined this by stating that crackdown on prescription opioids facilitates transition to different medication.


The researchers discovered three parameters from the prescription drug monitoring applications that impacted the variety of deadly overdoses. These have been:

  1. Reviw of affected person’s medical historical past by the medical doctors earlier than writing a prescription.
  2. Enhance in frequent updation of affected person’s prescription information.
  3. Elevated accessibility of affected person information to the suppliers.

Delcher shared that investigating the efficay of the prescription drug monitoring software is among the methods to enhance its effectivity and usefulness. He stated that the software may very well be made extra refined and spontaneous in order that it comes useful to the busy physicians, and they’re higher in a position to classify sufferers’ threat of misuse, abuse or overdose. Delcher is presently striving to enhance the patient-risk algorithms, overlying medicine dashboards, and different data-influenced strategies to boost the database.


Opioid overdose deaths on the rise

Almost 350,000 individuals succumbed to opioid overdose – each prescription and illicit – between 1999 and 2016. The overdose-related deaths manifested by means of three phases:

  • The primary part started in 1999 when the prescriptions for opioids elevated (methadone, pure and semi-synthetic opioids).
  • The second part commenced in 2010 when overdose deaths elevated on account of heroin.
  • The third part started in 2013 when overdose associated fatalities elevated on account of fentanyl. Many instances, fentanyl is laced with heroin and cocaine, and offered in counterfeit tablets.

Highway to restoration

Dependancy normally begins from a prescription and when the prescription runs dry, individuals gas their habit by means of illicit medication. These medication can have a catastrophic impact on each space of 1’s life. Thus, one ought to take drug abuse assist from a great drug abuse clinic earlier than it’s too late.



Source by Barbara Odozi



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