Opioids

Reversing the opioid epidemic

AMA Opioid Task Force

The AMA Opioid Task Force recognizes the need for increased physician leadership, a greater emphasis on overdose prevention and treatment, and the need to coordinate and amplify the efforts and best practices already occurring across the country. Much more work remains to reverse the nation's opioid epidemic, and the AMA Opioid Task Force is committed to doing what is necessary to end the epidemic. 

Read the latest “National Roadmap on State-Level Efforts to End the Opioid Epidemic" (PDF) from the Task Force, or read a short summary (PDF) of the report. The roadmap brings together the lessons learned through four individual state spotlight analyses and identifies best practices happening in the states to address the opioid epidemic.  

Download the 2019 Opioid Task Force Progress Report (PDF) to find out how physicians are progressing toward ending the nation's opioid epidemic.

New opioid task force recommendations

  • Remove prior authorization, step therapy and other inappropriate administrative burdens or barriers that delay or deny care for U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved medications used as part of medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder.
  • Support assessment, referral and treatment for co-occurring mental health disorders, as well as enforce state and federal laws that require insurance parity for mental health and substance use disorders.
  • Remove administrative and other barriers to comprehensive, multimodal, multidisciplinary pain care and rehabilitation programs.
  • Support maternal and child health by increasing access to evidence-based treatment, preserving families and ensuring that policies are nonpunitive.
  • Support reforms in the civil and criminal justice system that help ensure access to high quality, evidence-based care for opioid use disorder, including medication-assisted treatment.

Goals of the task force

The AMA Opioid Task Force encourages physicians to take six actions:

To learn more about what the AMA is doing to combat the opioid epidemic, access additional resources or hear what other physicians are doing to improve and increase access to care, visit the End the Opioid Epidemic website.