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AMA News Room

March 15, 2016

AMA Responds to CDC Guidelines on Opioids

For immediate release:
March 15, 2016

CHICAGO – In response to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines issued today, the American Medical Association (AMA) noted its shared goal of reducing harm from opioid abuse and seeking solutions to end this public health epidemic and applauds the agency for making the issue a high priority. As with any guideline development of this magnitude, we appreciated the opportunity to add the voice of patients and physicians.

"While we are largely supportive of the guidelines, we remain concerned about the evidence base informing some of the recommendations, conflicts with existing state laws and product labeling, and possible unintended consequences associated with implementation, which includes access and insurance coverage limitations for non-pharmacologic treatments, especially comprehensive care, and the potential effects of strict dosage and duration limits on patient care,” said Patrice A. Harris, MD, the AMA board chair-elect and chair of the AMA Task Force to Reduce Opioid Abuse.

“We know this is a difficult issue that doesn’t have easy solutions and if these guidelines help reduce the deaths resulting from opioids, they will prove to be valuable. If they produce unintended consequences, we will need to mitigate them. They are not the final word. More needs to be done, and we plan to continue working at the state and federal level to engage policy makers to take steps that will help end this epidemic.”

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Media Contact:
Jack Deutsch
AMA Media & Editorial
202-789-7442
Jack.Deutsch@ama-assn.org