On August 30, Governor John R. Kasich held a press conference at the Statehouse to discuss new prescription painkiller prescribing rules aimed at preventing addiction and reducing overdose deaths.
Effective August 31, Ohio’s health care regulatory boards implemented new limits on prescriptions issued for the treatment of acute pain. The rules are only intended to treat conditions resulting in acute pain, including those that normally fade with healing such as a surgical procedure or a bone fracture.
According the governor, the adoption of these rules can lead to an estimated reduction of opiate doses in Ohio by 109 million per year while preserving the ability of clinicians to address pain in a competent and compassionate way.
- No more than seven days of opiates can be prescribed for adults.
- No more than five days of opiates can be prescribed for minors.
- Physicians and other licensed health care prescribers can prescribe opiates in excess of the day supply limits only if they provide a specific reason in the patient’s medical record. Unless such a reason is given, physicians and other licensed health care providers are prohibited from prescribing opiates that exceed Ohio’s limits.
- Except for certain conditions specified in the rules, the total morphine equivalent dose (MED) of a prescription for acute pain cannot exceed an average of 30 MED per day.
- The new limits do not apply to opioids prescribed for cancer, palliative care, end-of-life/hospice care or medication-assisted treatment for addiction.
To help enforce the limited exceptions to the rules and enhance data regarding prescribing trends, prescribers will be required to include a diagnosis or procedure code on every controlled substance prescription, which will be entered into Ohio’s prescription monitoring program, the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System. This provision goes into effect on Friday, December 29, 2017, for all opiate prescriptions and Friday, June 1, 2018, for all other controlled substance prescriptions.
- Read a fact sheet on the new rules
- View Ohio’s Prescribing Guidelines
- Visit the Ohio Academy of Family Physicians’ opioid prescribing guidelines webpage.
- The State Medical Board of Ohio: 614.466.3934
- Governor John Kasich: 466.3555.