Abuse Deterrent Formulations (ADF) Allow People in Pain Better Access to the Medications They Need

Abuse Deterrent Formulations (ADF) Allow People in Pain Better Access to the Medications They Need

By Ken Taylor, Executive Director

Power of Pain Foundation

7/7/14

I have been an advocate for people in pain for eight years. I’m also a caregiver. Over the years, I have noticed a shift in the discussion of opioids; it seems less about patients who use them properly and more about the possibility of abuse. Opioids remain an important option in the treatment of chronic pain,but even patients who take medications as prescribed may feel their access to opioid analgesics restricted.

People in pain need safe, effective and accountable access to the proper medications. While providers, pharmaceutical companies and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continue to address abuse issues while ensuring appropriate access to opioid analgesics, there is more that can be done.

An important step is the creation of safer opioid analgesics.Referred to as Abuse Deterrent formulations (ADF), these opioids are developed and formulated to resist alteration and therefore deter abuse. The FDA considers the development of these products a high public health priority. And I agree.

Four Ways to Ensuring Proper Access to  Care

Strong and lasting solutions to the opioid health crisis depend on state and national pain policy. I encourage the pain community to help ensure that access to care remains a high priority for the millions of patients who need and take medications responsibly. As advocates, we can:

  1. Help define ADF technology. States need advocates to help define ADF based on FDA guidance.
  2. Support and create legislation which allows non-ADF products from being substituted by pharmacists for ADF,without approval of the prescribing health professional. This legislation should ensure that unless the substituted opioid is also a non-ADF or consent is obtained from the prescribing health professional, a pharmacist would be prohibited from substituting another opioid for an ADF.
  3. Advance patient safety. State legislation should place a high priority on ADF opioid market places where more ADF treatment options exist; and pharmaceutical companies should create these safer medications making them more readily available for pain patients.
  4. Support the removal of barriers to non-opioid therapies as a first line of treatment for pain.

As a leader in the pain community, I work hard to provide access to care for people in pain. I encourage patients and caregivers to learn more about ADF and pain legislation. I hear from patients around the country almost daily who are having trouble filling prescriptions as written. ADF’s can be a step in the right direction. There is a balance between safe opioid use and abuse;but it will require individuals to speak up and take action.

To learn more, visit www.powerofpainfoundation.org

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Fight for Tomorrow

RSDAdvisoryFightorFlightjAlways have faith that a better tomorrow will come. We have to or we won’t survive. The life of chronic pain becomes a family disease. In the last few months we have lost over a dozen people in the CRPS/RSD community. At least half to suicide. Most people do not premeditate their suicide. Many do experience suicidal ideations. It has been noted by professionals that “wanting to die or commit suicide” and suicidal ideations are not the same”. If they were more of us would be evaluated and helped before we get to the point of knowing our pain is never going to managed and into the sudden taking of our own lives. When it happens it is often spontaneous. There will have been signals and signs misread. There is always a cause and there will always be an affect. So many are not afforded proper medical care to reduce pain levels. Opioid medications, such as Hydrocodone,  continue to be well versed as a gate way drug to harder and heavier medications such as Oxycodone. It has been said a like a broken record over the past decades that Marijuana and narcotic use causes a person to become high risk for Heroin use. I do not believe this to be true. I do believe it’s possible in some personalities. Addictive personalities perhaps, but this does not include our entire population. I am offended for honest chronic pain patients that need pain care who have been dismissed as drug seekers. I am offended by good providers whose practices have been raided for prescribing Opioid medications.

It’s not the Opioid itself that is the epidemic in our society, it is the person who does not take it exactly as prescribed which can lead to abuse and misuse. Re evaluate the patient for possible addiction or consider another pain management plan of action. Either way they need help!

If pain patients aren’t taken care of and the pain cannot be controlled..

The number of deaths continue to rise. The epidemic will be chronic pain related suicides.

Your autopsy report will probably read..  as a result of depression, misus, abuse or other. There will be nothing about really happened. There will be nothing about the fact you couldn’t get pain relief and your last, very last resort was taking your own life.

DEA.. You don’t know pain until you’ve contemplated.

Speak up and speak out!

Let there always be a tomorrow. Fight for your tomorrow!