What Healthcare Providers Need to Know about PDMPs
What is a PDMP?
A prescription drug monitoring program (PDMP) is an electronic database that tracks controlled substance prescriptions. PDMPs can help identify patients who may be misusing prescription opioids or other prescription drugs and who may be at risk for overdose.
Responsible Prescribing Can Save Lives
Clinical practice guidelines encourage use of the PDMP prior to prescribing to assess a patient’s history of controlled substance use.
It is possible to improve the way opioids are prescribed, reducing the number of people who misuse, abuse, or overdose from them, while making sure patients have access to safe, effective pain management.
Use PDMPs to Improve Patient Safety
PDMPs [PDF – 8 MB] can alert you to provide potentially lifesaving information and interventions. Take action to improve patient safety:
- Do not dismiss patients from care
- If patients are receiving high total opioid dosages
- Consider collaborating with the patient to taper to a safer dosage
- Consider offering naloxone
- If patients are taking benzodiazepines with opioids
- Communicate with others managing the patient
- Weigh patient goals, needs, and risks
- If considering opioid use disorder, discuss safety concerns and treatment options