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Opioids in work comp – Survey says…

We are just about done with our Survey on Opioid Management in Workers’ Comp and there are a few early findings that caught our attention.

(to complete the survey, and register for the iPad we’re giving to one respondent, click here)

About 2/3 of respondents have been in WC for more than 15 years, and about the same percentage work in claims or medical management.  In all, a highly experienced, very knowledgeable group.

The most common first words that come to mind when they hear the word “opioids” are addiction and abuse. 

40% of respondents said senior management is “very concerned” about opioids.

A majority of respondents think payers’ efforts to address opioids have been somewhat or very ineffective; most blame lack of effective regulations.

Payers would like to see regulations: 

  • instituting evidence-based clinical guidelines; 
  • supporting urine drug monitoring;  and
  • requiring opioid agreements/contracts.

Finally, 94% said opioid usage has lead to addiction/dependency.


Is your hair on fire?


Joe Paduda is the principal of Health Strategy Associates



A national consulting firm specializing in managed care for workers’ compensation, group health and auto, and health care cost containment. We serve insurers, employers and health care providers.



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