Eve D. Losman, MD, MHSA
On November 1, 2019, the University of Michigan Injury Prevention Center (UM-IPC; https://injurycenter.umich.edu/) will publish a free, publicly available, web-based toolkit on the safer opioid prescribing practices and opioid overdose prevention. This work is the result of a partnership between the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) and the Injury Prevention Center, which is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The toolkit is the first product of a large body of work focused on the opiate crisis that includes exploration and dissemination of ED-based Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) practice guidelines with an eye to rural communities. The IPC is also engaged in research on the role of the ED in the screening for Opiate Use Disorder (OUD), collating first responder, Medical Examiner, and ED data for real time surveillance of opiate overdose hotspots, as well as the use of telehealth to expand access to Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Services.
This web-based toolkit serves as a “one stop shop” for just in time resources and materials and information that a physician may use with their patient during their office visit. It includes flowcharts and printable materials that can be posted in clinical areas. The content is organized in broad categories with “provider-facing” and “patients and family facing” webpages that link the viewer to a variety of topics related to the opiate crisis. While some of the content is specific to Michigan, much is universally applicable and relevant to ED physicians and their patients. Topic areas include Non-Pharmacologic Approaches to Pain, Non-Opiate Approaches to Pain, Universal Precautions for Prescribing Opiates, Controlled Substance Patient-Provider Agreements, Screening for opioid use disorders (OUD), Tapering Strategies, Linkage to SUD Services, Special Populations, Safe Disposal, Naloxone, and Reducing the Stigma of OUD. The toolkit can be accessed at https://injurycenter.umich.edu/opioid-overdose/michigan-safer-opioid-prescribing-toolkit/ after its launch on November 1.