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Naloxone and Morphine Milligram Equivalents Discussion

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Health & Medical

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Discussion

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It is important to mention the recent changes in state laws to allow the patients to have easier
access to naloxone.
The 2016 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for
Chronic Pain recommended to clinicians that they could co-prescribe naloxone to patients that
have increased overdose risk, like the ones prescribed a daily opioid dose of 50 morphine
milligram equivalents (MME) or greater or those receiving benzodiazepines. (Jones et at., 2019)
When a provider writes a co-prescription of naloxone is granting access to patients to prevent an
opioids overdose. (Jones et at., 2019)
To date, the extent of naloxone co-prescribing is unknown. (Jones et at., 2019)
A study using Medicare Part D data to compare national and state rates of naloxone co-
prescribing in 2016-2017 showed that rates for naloxone co-prescription with any opioid
increased from 1.5 per 1000 patients in 2016 to 4.6 per 1000 in 2017. This means that just a
minority of patients were co-prescribed naloxone. (Jones et at., 2019)
The study is limited because it does not encompass patients that paid cash or received naloxone
outside of Medicare Part D, neither includes if clinicians prescribed naloxone but patients did not
fill the prescription. (Jones et at., 2019)
More research is needed but is a good start point to counteract the opioids overdose epidemic.
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It is important to mention the recent changes in state laws to allow the patients to have easier access to naloxone. The 2016 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain recommended to clinicians that they could co-prescribe naloxone to patients that have increased overdose risk, like the ones prescribed a daily opioid dose of 50 morphine milligram equivalents (MME) or greater or those receiving benzodiazepines. (Jones et at., 2019) When a provider writes a co-prescription of naloxone is granting access to patients to prevent an opioids overd ...
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