Safe Opioid Prescribing Training Offered

Man holding his prescription bottle reading the directions

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) strongly encourages prescribers to complete a risk evaluation mitigation strategy (REMS)-compliant training (opens in new window), including a knowledge assessment, and to counsel patients regarding the safe use, risks, storage and disposal of extended-release and long-acting (ER/LA) opioid analgesics. To be eligible as continuing education (CE) credits, this training needs to be offered by an accredited CE provider and must include all elements of the FDA Blueprint for Prescriber Education for Extended-Release and Long-Acting Opioid Analgesics (opens in new window).

Important notes:

  • ER/LA opioid products provide an even greater risk of overdose due to the higher opioid dosage in these formulations.
  • Patients should be sufficiently opioid-tolerant before extended-release formulations are prescribed. Patients may be predisposed to opioid overdose risk if any of the following are present:1
    • Those with:
      • Opioid dependence
      • Reduced tolerance of opioids
    • Those who:
      • Use prescription opioids
      • Use opioids with sedating agents
      • Use opioids with certain conditions, such as HIV infection, lung or liver disease, or depression
      • Live with others who have high-dose opioids in the household
  • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires that all ER/LA opioids include a REMS within their medication product labeling.2

A list of REMS-compliant trainings is available at https://search.er-la-opioidrems.com/Guest/GuestPageExternal.aspx (opens in new window).

  1. World Health Organization (WHO). Community Management of Opioid Overdose. Geneva, Switzerland: WHO; 2014. http://apps.who.int/iris/handle/10665/137462 (opens in new window).
  2. Food and Drug Administration, Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategies. https://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/DrugSafety/InformationbyDrugClass/UCM515636.pdf (opens in new window).