- ED physicians and nurse practitioners treating flare-ups in chronic-pain patients should first contact that patient’s primary care providers.
- Prescriptions for acute pain, such as a broken bone, should not exceed 30 pills.
- Emergency patients should be screened for substance-abuse dangers before being prescribed opioid medication.
- Official picture IDs must be presented at pharmacies to pick up pain prescriptions.
- Reminders to all providers that while they must evaluate pain, laws do not require them to prescribe opioids if other measures could work.
The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) has not developed an official position on the prescribing of painkillers in emergency rooms. In an interview with the New York Times, Dr. Alex Rosenau, president-elect of the ACEP, said he appreciated Mr. Bloomberg’s activism in the face of a serious public health problem, but he also said he has a problem with legislators encroaching on his ability to practice. “Here is my problem with legislative medicine. It prevents me from being a professional and using my judgment,” he said. What do you think?