Longer-Term Use of Opioids
With opioid misuse a top public health problem in the United States,
this study examined longer-term use of narcotics in 21 states and how
often recommended treatment guidelines for monitoring injured workers
with longer-term use were followed by physicians.
The information provided will help public officials identify means to
strengthen the design or implementation of public policies related to
narcotic use, and help payors target efforts to better manage the use of
narcotics while providing appropriate care to injured workers and
reducing unnecessary risks to patients and unnecessary costs to
The study is based on nearly 300,000 workers' compensation claims and
1.1 million prescriptions associated with those claims from 21 states.
The claims represent injuries arising from October 1, 2006, to September
30, 2009, with prescriptions filled up to March 31, 2011. The underlying
data reflect an average of 24 months’ experience.
The states included in this study are: Arizona, Arkansas, California,
Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts,
Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania,
South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Longer-Term Use of Opioids. Dongchun Wang, Dean Hashimoto, and
Kathryn Mueller. October 2012. WC-12-39.